In response to a complaint from popular singer Justin Bieber, Swedish fashion brand H&M removed his related merchandise, Merch Collection from in-store and online.
It all started on Monday of this week. Bieber called out H&M on his Instagram Stories, accusing the brand of selling merchandise without his permission and approval. On the following IG story, he also mocked the product as “Trush” and urged his fans to save their money, saying, “I didn’t approve it, don’t buy it.”
Justin Bieber says H&M’s new merch is being sold without his permission or approval 😳 pic.twitter.com/Vv63GowZKv
— DANI MEDINA (@danimedinanews) December 19, 2022
After this claim from Bieber, the brand immediately released the statement that H&M followed proper approval procedures as with all other licensed products and partnerships. Also, the brand added, “Nevertheless, out of respect for Justin, we removed the products from our site and stores, and we’re working to find the best way to make use of them” and immediately showed a movement to withdraw the product.
Finally, H&M stressed that they have been Justin Bieber’s merchandise partner since 2016, and said “we are very proud of the work we have done so far.”
Bieber has partnered with H&M in the past, collaborating on a merchandise line for his Purpose tour in 2017. However, it is not yet clear which of these claims is correct in this case.
It is not uncommon for celebrities to accuse or sue sellers for using their photos and lyrics in product designs without their permission.
In 2013, pop singer Rihanna filed a lawsuit against British fast fashion brand Topshop’s parent company Arcadia for $5 million (£3.3m) over the T-shirts, which featured a photo taken during a video shoot in 2011. In those cases, the three court of appeal judges declared there was no English law directly allowing anyone to restrain the reproduction of their name or image. However, their judgment provided further legal grounds for the famous to limit the situation in which commercial advantage can be derived from exploiting their celebrity status.
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