Fearless Women! – IPwars.com

Seaside J has dominated that Maurice Blackburn didn’t breach any of State Avenue International’s rights within the Fearless Lady statue by arranging for a duplicate to be displayed on the launch of a marketing campaign to deal with the gender pay hole.

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

In 2016, State Avenue had commissioned Kristen Visbal to create a life-size bronze statue which grew to become referred to as “Fearless Lady” in reference to a marketing campaign to advertise State Avenue’s Gender Range Index alternate traded fund, referred to as the “SHE fund”.

The finished statue was put in and unveiled in Bowling Inexperienced Park on Wall Avenue, famously showing to confront the Charging Bull statue.[1] This had been a wildly profitable marketing campaign with, amongst different issues, over 4.6 billion Twitter impressions (?) and a “mere” 745 million Instagram impressions (?) within the first 12 weeks!

In 2019, Maurice Blackburn and various company and tremendous fund backers negotiated an settlement with Ms Visbal for a charge of USD250,000 letting them show a Fearless Lady duplicate in Federation Sq. Melbourne[2] in reference to a marketing campaign for Equal Pay Day.

After Maurice Blackburn despatched out invites to the disclosing of the Fearless Lady duplicate in Federation Sq., State Avenue sued Maurice Blackburn and a few of its co-funders for just about every thing they might consider:

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

All of the claims failed.

Seaside J’s causes for judgment run for some 1191 paragraphs over 274 pages. So, extra thought-about evaluation must wait a later day (or days).

The central difficulty appears to have been the very particular nature of State Avenue’s rights to manage additional reproductions of the work and the cautious method Maurice Blackburn had used Fearless Lady.

The phrases State Avenue and the artist had negotiated included a clause granting State Avenue the unique rights:

to show and distribute two-dimensional copies, and three-dimensional Artist-sanctioned copies, of the Art work to advertise (i) gender variety points in company governance and within the monetary providers sector, and (ii) SSGA and the services and products it gives. …. (emphasis provided)

and Ms Visbal additionally agreed that no different social gathering could possibly be licensed to make use of “the Art work” as a emblem or model ….

Seaside J held that the way in which Maurice Blackburn had used Fearless Lady in reference to the Equal Pay Day marketing campaign didn’t fall throughout the scope of State Avenue’s unique rights. It additionally was not use as a emblem or model. Michaela Whitbourn has a pleasant abstract.

Nevertheless, it appears to be like like there’ll have to be an additional listening to to find out whether or not, and if that’s the case, how Maurice Blackburn might use and show its Fearless Lady duplicate sooner or later.

State Avenue International Advisors Belief Firm v Maurice Blackburn Pty Ltd (No 2) [2021] FCA 137


  1. These of you on the market with lengthy(-ish) recollections, would possibly recall that that juxtaposition induced its personal ‘ethical rights’ controversy. Fearless Lady was later moved in April 2018 to its present place in entrance of the New York Inventory Change. ?
  2. Fed Sq., in fact, just isn’t with out its personal controversies! ?