Nike logo of Michael Jordan didn’t violate copyright

SHARE Nike logo of Michael Jordan didn’t violate copyright
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In this Oct. 17, 2017 file photo, The Michael Jordan “Jumpman” logo is shown on merchandise at the Charlotte Hornets’ NBA basketball fan store in Charlotte, N.C.| Chuck Burton/AP, File

SAN FRANCISCO — A U.S. appeals court says an iconic Nike logo of a leaping Michael Jordan didn’t violate the copyright of an earlier photograph of the basketball star.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said Tuesday that the logo was based on a photograph of Jordan by Nike that was inspired by a 1984 photo by Jacobus Rentmeester.

They both show Jordan leaping with his legs extended outward toward a basketball hoop with a ball above his head. But the court says the photos are unmistakably different in key elements.

Nike used its photo for the “Jumpman” logo — a silhouetted image of Jordan in the pose that the company has used to market billions of dollars of merchandise.

An email to a law firm representing Rentmeester wasn’t immediately returned.

Associated Press

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