Miley Cyrus is facing a copyright infringement lawsuit over posting a picture of herself to her Instagram when it’s alleged that she didn’t have the rights to use it.
Photographer Robert Barbera, who took the image, sued Cyrus on Friday (September 9) in a California federal court over her use of the picture. He claims that the image she posted on her Instagram in February 2021 was done so without his permission.
Bloomberg Law reports that Barbera’s complaint alleges that Cyrus received a financial benefit from her infringing post, which boosted traffic to her account and increased revenue generated by the sale of her music.
Barbera claims that Cyrus’ “impermissible use has crippled if not destroyed the potentiality of any market for the Photograph”.
The photographer is seeking a jury trial as well as actual and statutory damages.
Meanwhile, earlier this year Barbera sued Dua Lipa for a second time for sharing one of his paparazzi photos of herself on Instagram.
Barbera is reportedly seeking damages and penalties from the profits Lipa could have made with the photograph on Instagram, on which she advertises her music, brand and business interests.
He also claims that he attempted to settle the matter with Lipa outside of court. After the singer received a draft of the complaint, communication reportedly “slowed and eventually stopped”, he alleges. The images in question were also removed from her account.
The new lawsuit is the second Lipa has faced in a year for sharing paparazzi photos of herself on social media. In July 2021, she was sued by Integral Images for copyright infringement. The lawsuit was ultimately dismissed with prejudice in October.
Barbera has also filed similar lawsuits against other pop stars including Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber in the past.
He attempted to sue Grande twice – in May 2019 and January 2020 – for claims that she had shared paparazzi photos on Instagram. Both cases were dismissed.
The lawsuit against Bieber was reportedly settled out of court.