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T.I. + Tiny Pain Lose Copyright Lawsuit

On Friday (5.26) after a jury of their peers ruled in favor of the toymaker T.I. and Tiny lost their copyright infringement lawsuit against the L.O.L. Surprise! doll maker MGA Entertainment.

Born Clifford Harris, the superstar rapper and Tiny (aka Tameka Cottle) first filed suit against MGA Entertainment for allegedly stealing the name, likeness, and trade dress of OMG Girlz – the pop group Tiny founded in 2009 – when the company launched its “L.O.L. Surprise OMG” dolls in 2019.

While the case first went to trial in January of this year, a mistrial was declared after T.I. and Tiny’s attorney – who was previously warned about arguing that the toymakers “misappropriate the likeness of Black female artists” – accused MGA of “racist cultural appropriation.”

The $100,000,000.00 lawsuit went back to trial this month, and following arguments related to 31 potentially infringing dolls were made, the jury took less than 120 minutes to rule in favor of MGA Entertainment, Legal Affairs and Trials reported.

Following the verdict, MGA CEO Isaac Larian called the musician’s lawsuit a “shakedown” stating:

“I’m not happy because I wasted a lot of time, energy — my employees’ time, energy — to deal with an extortion.” “They knew from the beginning they don’t have a case, and they brought it anyways. And they picked on the wrong guy.” said Larian who joked that he’d celebrate his victory by “going to go buy a yellow dress and color my hair pink,” a nod to one of the dolls in question.

While their legal battle with T.I. has ended, MGA’s war over the Black Eyed Peas rages on: Back in January, BMG sued the toymaker, alleging that a jingle dubbed “My Poops” – used to market a line of slime-shitting unicorns – infringed on its copyright to the Black Eyed Peas’ 2006 hit, “My Humps.” 

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Author: Al Denté

Photo: Concerttour