The price of fame? A photo agency has filed a federal lawsuit against Khloe Kardashian, accusing the reality star of infringing on their copyrights.
According to court documents, Xposure Photos alleges that the reality star, 32, posted a photo illegally on Instagram without crediting them and removed the copyright information. The company is demanding $150,000.
The pic was taken when the Strong Looks Better Naked author was at the Miami restaurant Komodo in September 2016. She was joined by her older sister Kourtney Kardashian at the time. The photos were originally bought by another outlet.
Xposure Photos claims that the company would have profited from the photos if Khloe hadn’t shared them on her account.
“Kardashian’s Instagram post made the photograph immediately available to her nearly 67 million followers and others, consumers of entertainment news — and especially news and images of Kardashian herself, as evidenced by their status as followers of Kardashian —who would otherwise be interested in viewing licensed versions of the photograph in the magazines and newspapers that are plaintiff’s customers,” the company said in a statement.
The plaintiff is Xposure Photos, a U.K.-based photo agency. Most stars don’t like the paparazzi, but according to this lawsuit filed in California, Kardashian may have taken to an image of herself snapped by Manual Munoz and then licensed to The Daily Mail. The image shows Kardashian and one of her sisters going for a meal at a Miami restaurant.
“Plaintiff never licensed the Photograph to defendants,” states the complaint, referring to Kardashian and 10 anonymous John Does. (Is her social media team that big?) “Nevertheless, defendants have used, and continue to use, the Photograph without authorization or permission from plaintiff to do so. Specifically, Kardashian copied the Photograph and distributed it on . The copy of the Photograph that Kardashian distributed on Instagram had been altered to remove the CMI [copyright management information] showing plaintiff as the copyright owner of the image.”
Xposure is now demanding an injunction, profits arising from the act of alleged infringement, statutory damages up to $25,000 and more.
Kardashian is an avid Instagram user, and sometimes includes sponsored posts. As Us Weekly exclusively revealed last month, she can earn up to $250,000 for promoting just one brand or product on the social platform. Kourtney, 37, can command around the same amount, while Kim Kardashian can make $500,000 from one campaign.
Khloe’s rep had no comment on the lawsuit.