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NFL Star Jim Brown Appeals Decision In Madden Lawsuit

Former NFL player Jim Brown has appealed a court decision made last September that ruled Electronic Arts was within its First Amendment rights when it included a player similar to Brown in its Madden NFL series.
Former NFL player Jim Brown has appealed a court decision made last September that ruled Electronic Arts was within its First Amendment rights when it included a player similar to Brown in its Madden NFL series of games. Although Brown's name is not used in Madden NFL, the former Cleveland Browns player took issue with the use of his likeness and jersey number, and sued EA in 2008 along with fellow former NFL player Herb Adderly. Last September, United States District Court Judge Florence-Marie Cooper, who has since passed away, dismissed the suit, but now Brown has appealed that dismissal in a San Francisco appellate court. In her decision, Cooper said games "are expressive works, akin to an expressive painting that depicts celebrity athletes of past and present in a realistic sporting environment," allowing Electronic Arts the creative freedom to include a player alluding to Brown. According to the New York Times, EA communications VP Jeff Brown said, "We remain confident that the ruling will be upheld."

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