The lawsuit opened between Hermes and Mason Rothschild, the creator of the NFT

Lawsuit between luxury brand Hermès and digital artist Mason Rothschild It is scheduled to start on Monday, January 30th. House of Hermes accuses the Californian Infringement of intellectual property rights by selling a group of NFT Titled “MetaBirkins” Strongly inspired by the famous bags of the French brand. This case should clarify the companies’ rights over the unauthorized virtual assets.

NFTs are similar to Birkin Hermes

Hermès Birkin has been considered, for years, As a luxury bag par excellence, At selling prices exceeding 10,000 euros. In order to explore the popularity of this piece, Mason Rothschild created in May 2021, “Baby Birkin”a non-replaceable symbol representing the famous transparent bag with a fetus inside. It sold for $23,500The American artist did not wait long to renew the experience. Still In the NFT, he released a hundred bags of fur Always Birkin style. “MetaBirkins” group saw the light of day.

If each handbag is offered for purchase for a few thousand dollars, Hermès believes that the damage caused by this intellectual property is theft reach more than a million dollars. The Paris-based company indicates that at the time of its complaint, at the end of January 2022, During the big NFT boomTotal sales It was $1.1 million. The lowest price of the token is $15,200 and the highest sale is $45,100. Even today, Mason Rothschild Get a small percentage back with each transaction.

At the crossroads between trademark law and the protection of freedom of expression

In its complaint, Hermes described its opponent as: Digital speculator looking to get rich quick Mason Rothschild asked discontinue use of its Birkin brand, It destroys all NFTs and gets rid of its earnings. Faced with these demands, the artist announced that his works It was protected by the First Amendment of the United States Constitution. The latter states that ” Congress will not make any law which affects the establishment or prohibits the free exercise of a religion or restrict freedom of expression or press “.

To the media, he presented his work as A way to explore the issue of apparent consumption He specifies that his bags are not Birkin but rather ” imaginary representations Gone by Wall Street JournalMason Rothschild explained that ” MetaBirkins was an artistic experiment To determine the value of a Birkin bag : In the material thing made by hand or in the image that it displays? “.

He even went further than that Compare his work to that of Andy Warhol and Campbell’s Serigraph Soup Cans Makes 32 cans of Campbell’s Soup. At the time, the food company was also skeptical of the pop art master’s work before accepting it.

Opening of the trial between Hermes and Mason Rothschild Highly expected by experts in American law. Amy Adler, professor of law at New York University, points out: Wall Street Journal to be the case The latest development in the debate over the applicability of trademarks in the art world And ” Changing the game in intellectual property law “.

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