Despite Bet365 arguing it had used images of 23 Danish athletes without their permission for editorial content purposes only, Denmark’s Maritime and Commercial Court has ruled otherwise, ordering the UK-based online gambling firm to pay DKK 4.7m ($691,128) in compensation.
The Sø-og Handelsretten’s ruling on Monday was that use of the images counted as marketing, and that Bet365 should have asked the individuals for their consent before using their intellectual property (IP) on social media.
Denmark national soccer team stars Christian Eriksen, Kasper Schmeichel, and Simon Kjaer
The 23 include Denmark national soccer team stars Christian Eriksen, Kasper Schmeichel, and Simon Kjaer, handball champion Mikkel Hansen, and badminton player and Olympian Viktor Axelsen.
Danish national daily Berlingske reported that Manchester United midfielder Eriksen had his image used the most and therefore the verdict awarded him the largest sum of DKK 1.45m ($213,730).
The Danish Players’ Association represented 21 of the 23 athletes. Association director Michael Sahl Hansen stated his body was “happy that the court has drawn a thick line under the fact that it requires consent to use the players’ images or names.”