Yahoo, Is A Picture Worth $20 Million?

    March 2, 2007

An Ohio woman is suing Yahoo for $20 million claiming the company used a photograph of her to promote their email services without her permission.

 A complaint filed in Ohio federal court alleges that Yahoo misused the likeness of Shannon Stoval. She reportedly learned her image was being used after signing up for Yahoo email. She first became aware of her image being used by Yahoo when she received the sign-up email confirmation sent to her new Yahoo email address.

 Stoval is taking the suit seriously as she is being represented by attorneys from 3 different law firms. She is alleging that Yahoo violated her right to publicity and right to privacy.

 The $20 million Stoval is asking is for compensatory and punitive damages along with a portion of the profits that were generated through the use of her image, and to cover legal fees.

A couple of questions come to mind about this suit. The first being how did Yahoo use her image without knowing it was not licensed? The second being why would an individual require 3 separate attorney