Fearless Women! – IPwars.com

Seashore J has dominated that Maurice Blackburn did not breach any of State Highway Worldwide’s rights throughout the Fearless Girl statue by arranging for a copy to be displayed on the launch of a advertising marketing campaign to deal with the gender pay gap.

Image of Fearless Girl bronze sculpture in alley with tour group in background
Image by maggavel from Pixabay

In 2016, State Highway had commissioned Kristen Visbal to create a life-size bronze statue which turned known as “Fearless Girl” in reference to a advertising marketing campaign to promote State Highway’s Gender Selection Index change traded fund, known as the “SHE fund”.

The completed statue was put in and unveiled in Bowling Inexperienced Park on Wall Highway, famously exhibiting to confront the Charging Bull statue.[1] This had been a wildly worthwhile advertising marketing campaign with, amongst totally different points, over 4.6 billion Twitter impressions (?) and a “mere” 745 million Instagram impressions (?) throughout the first 12 weeks!

In 2019, Maurice Blackburn and plenty of firm and super fund backers negotiated an settlement with Ms Visbal for a cost of USD250,000 letting them present a Fearless Girl copy in Federation Sq. Melbourne[2] in reference to a advertising marketing campaign for Equal Pay Day.

After Maurice Blackburn despatched out invitations to the revealing of the Fearless Girl copy in Federation Sq., State Highway sued Maurice Blackburn and some of its co-funders for nearly each little factor they could contemplate:

  • interference with contractual relations;
  • false, misleading or deceptive conduct in commerce and commerce Reverse to the Australian Shopper Laws and passing off;
  • commerce mark infringement; and
  • copyright infringement.

The entire claims failed.

Seashore J’s causes for judgment run for some 1191 paragraphs over 274 pages. So, further thought-about analysis ought to wait a later day (or days).

The central topic seems to have been the very specific nature of State Highway’s rights to handle extra reproductions of the work and the cautious methodology Maurice Blackburn had used Fearless Girl.

The phrases State Highway and the artist had negotiated included a clause granting State Highway the distinctive rights:

to point out and distribute two-dimensional copies, and three-dimensional Artist-sanctioned copies, of the Artwork work to promote (i) gender selection factors in firm governance and throughout the financial firms sector, and (ii) SSGA and the companies it gives. …. (emphasis offered)

and Ms Visbal moreover agreed that no totally different social gathering may be authorized to utilize “the Artwork work” as a emblem or mannequin ….

Seashore J held that the way in which by which Maurice Blackburn had used Fearless Girl in reference to the Equal Pay Day advertising marketing campaign did not fall contained in the scope of State Highway’s distinctive rights. It moreover was not use as a emblem or mannequin. Michaela Whitbourn has a pleasing summary.

Nonetheless, it seems like there’ll have to be an additional listening to to seek out out whether or not or not, and if that is the case, how Maurice Blackburn would possibly use and present its Fearless Girl copy ultimately.

State Highway Worldwide Advisors Perception Agency v Maurice Blackburn Pty Ltd (No 2) [2021] FCA 137


  1. These of you available on the market with prolonged(-ish) reminiscences, may recall that that juxtaposition introduced on its private ‘moral rights’ controversy. Fearless Girl was later moved in April 2018 to its current place in entrance of the New York Stock Commerce. ?
  2. Fed Sq., actually, simply is not with out its private controversies! ?