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Court Documents Reveal Yuga Labs Lacks Bored Ape Image Copyright Registration

2 mins
Updated by Kyle Baird
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In Brief

  • Court documents in the Yuga Labs and Ryder Ripps lawsuit show that Yuga Labs lacks copyright registration for BAYC images.
  • Multiple celebrities are also facing a lawsuit for promoting the NFT collection.
  • Yuga Labs has also filed two different lawsuits against developers related to the Ripps collection.
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Yuga Labs does not have copyright registration for the images in the BAYC NFT collection. The information comes from court documents in the case against Ryder Ripps.

Court documents reveal that Bored Ape Yacht Club’s (BAYC) parent company Yuga Labs does not have any copyright registrations for images in the collection. The information comes from court filings in the case between Yuga Labs and artist Ryder Ripps.

Ripps used images from the famous NFT collection in his own NFT collection called RR/BAYC. Yuga Labs has sued Ripps for various reasons, including false advertising, trademark infringement, and cybersquatting. The parent company of BAYC has not sued Ripps for copyright reasons.

It’s an interesting development in the case, which sparked a lot of discussion regarding the copyright nature of the apes. The court filing reads,

“Registration of a copyright is not required to own one; it is required to file suit on one. The Court should not wade into whether Yuga Labs has a copyright in its Bored Ape images, because such an opinion would be merely advisory; Yuga Labs does not have a registered copyright, and there is therefore no imminent threat of a lawsuit for copyright infringement.”

Yuga Labs Bored Ape collection experienced a drop in last 30 days Data by CryptoSlam
Bored Ape Yacht Club Sales Volume: CryptoSlam

While still among the most popular NFT collections on the market, the Bored Ape Yacht Club collection recently experienced a drop in popularity. The project saw a 30% drop in 24-hour sales volume, with sales value dropping by 12.% to $1.1 million.

Celebrities Promoters of BAYC Facing Class Action Lawsuit

Meanwhile, celebrities are facing class action lawsuits for promoting Bored Ape NFTs. Among them are Justin Bieber, Madonna, Steph Curry, and Paris Hilton. The lawsuit filed in California in December alleged that the celebrities violated state and federal laws.

The lawsuit alleges that talent manager Guy Oseary asked celebrities to publicly support the Bored Ape collection in exchange for funds that were sent through MoonPay. Oseary has also invested in MoonPay.

Yuga Labs has denied the claims. The company is in the midst of many lawsuits, but it continues to release new collections, including the recently launched Sewer Pass.

Yuga Labs Files Lawsuits Against Developers for Alleged Involvement

In one of the latest developments regarding lawsuits, Yuga Labs claimed that developers of an NFT marketplace tricked customers into buying fake BAYC NFTs. Two separate lawsuits were filed against Ryan Hickman and Thomas Lehman.

Yuga Labs alleges Hickman and Lehman participated in the sale of Ripp’s NFTs. The company stated that Hickman was a “central part” of the RR/BAYC effort.

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Rahul Nambiampurath
Rahul Nambiampurath's cryptocurrency journey first began in 2014 when he stumbled upon Satoshi's Bitcoin whitepaper. With a bachelor's degree in Commerce and an MBA in Finance from Sikkim Manipal University, he was among the few that first recognized the sheer untapped potential of decentralized technologies. Since then, he has helped DeFi platforms like Balancer and Sidus Heroes — a web3 metaverse — as well as CEXs like Bitso (Mexico's biggest) and Overbit to reach new heights with his...
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