Golden Gate University Law Review


Nairi Chakalian


In Newcombe v. Adolf Coors Co., the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that a Major League baseball pitcher, retired for over thirty years, had valid publicity infringement claims against defendants who created an advertisement using a drawing of his stance. According to the court, a material factual issue existed as to whether the drawing of the stance in the advertisement conjured up images of the pitcher, even though the pitcher's face could not be identified from the drawing, and his name did not appear anywhere in the advertisement. Thus, the court found a subtle image such as a stance may constitute likeness for claims under section 3344(a) of the California Civil Code and common law.