Updates: Doug Somers’ WWE Lawsuit & Linda McMahon


Source(s): Pwinsider & The Day

The Day has a report on Linda McMahon’s campaign, which argued against a Quinnipiac poll that had her down by six points to Democrat Congressman Christopher Murphy in the race for the US Senate in Connecticut.

Her internal polling shows her up by one and the campaign claims that the Q-poll undersamples Republicans by six points.

— Here are some updates on the lawsuit of former AWA World Tag Team Champion Dog Somers (Douglas Duane Somerson) against WWE and both Vince and Linda McMahon that he filed in November 2011. He is suing over the AWA footage with his likeness and matches that have appeared on four DVDs, WWE Classics on Demand, books and other materials without his personal consent.

On October 11, WWE wanted the case (which was moved federal court to the US District Court in Georgia) dismissed, as Somers was a public persona and any material used by the company was newsworthy and factual. WWE claimed that it falls under the first Amendment, just like a news broadcast or article. The company used the court ruling of Nancy Benoit and her nude photos being published by Hustler as a legal precedent.

Somers said that WWE is not reporting on newsworthy items on their website, which they use to promote themselves and wrestling. He also claims the legal precedents can’t be applied since the stories weren’t factual. They were a “fictionalized narrative created by the Defendant.” He also said that in Geogria, “the commercial use of a person’s identity is actionable when it is done for commercial gain,” claiming that the only reason WWE continues their website is for commercial gain. That means that using his imagine in articles “can only be used for purposes of marketing and/or advertising its product.” He also claimed that they were trying to create a “self-reporting” exception as their defense and asked the court to deny the motion.

WWE then responded on October 15. They claimed his lawsuit was in “full retreat” and asked the court to end it. They say Somers didn’t bring up any merchandise that used his name beyond DVDs, which the court rules did not fall under his “right to publicity” claim. They said any mentions of Somers on WWE.com are a “handful of textual references to Somerson’s name in the context of historical information” about the AWA and AWA wrestlers. They noted that the references would fall under protected speech and freedom of expression.

They also said that Somers has complained about his privacy being violated in the same lawsuit where he calls himself a “highly successful professional wrestler and entertainer.” The company said that no references to Somers were used to advertise or suggested a false endorsement by Somers of the WWE product.

Please read our community guidelines before posting a comment.