Olympic Athletes Sue Samsung Over Rip-Off Facebook App

By Gary Cutlack on at

A group of ageing Olympic stars have come together to complain about Samsung, which they claim has stolen their faces to help promote its Olympic Facebook app.

Samsung's Olympic app is a weird thing it calls the US Olympic Genome Project, which it says is a way of telling if/how closely a person is related to some famous Olympic stars. Problem is, 18 of those Olympic stars claim Samsung's profiting from using their likenesses without permission, ruining their potential for sponsorship with other cash-rich tech giants.

Richard Foster, the attorney for the angry Olympians, said: "They’re using names and images to sell products, and they’ve admitted in interviews that they’re trying to create a more positive image for Samsung ... California law says you can’t use anybody’s name or image to market a product unless you have their consent."

Samsung claims it sent all the athletes involved an email letting them know they were going to be included and giving them the chance to opt out, although the lawyer says not all of them received the notification -- and some that opted out have been included anyway. [Wired]