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A slew of celebrities, from Gigi Hadid to Jessica Simpson, face lawsuits over posting paparazzi photos of themselves online in the last few months. Ariana Grande joined their ranks on Monday, BuzzFeed News reports. A photographer alleges the pop star broke copyright law by sharing pictures he took of her on Instagram.
Last August, in honor of the release of Grande’s new album Sweetener, the singer posted two images of herself leaving a building and holding a bag with the word “Sweetener” on it to her Instagram account. They were taken by New York-based photographer Robert Barbera, who is now suing for either $25,000 per picture or whatever profits Grande received from the post, according to BuzzFeed News.
The post remains on Grande’s page and has accumulated more than 2 million likes. Barbera filed a screenshot of it as evidence in the case.
“[Grande] infringed [Barbera’s] copyright in the Photographs by reproducing and publicly displaying the Photographs on the Instagram Page,” Barbera wrote in his lawsuit. “[Grande] is not, and has never been, licensed or otherwise authorized to reproduce, publically display, distribute and/or use the Photographs.”
Grande has not publically commented on the lawsuit and did not respond to a request for comment by BuzzFeed News.
Other celebrities including Simpson, 50 Cent, and Khloe Kardashian have faced similar lawsuits over using paparazzi photos of themselves on their social media accounts. In January, a New York-based photo agency accused Gigi Hadid of copyright infringement after she posted one of its photos on her Instagram. The image has since been deleted.
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H/T BuzzFeed News
Alyse Stanley is a video game and culture reporter based in Virginia with words at Polygon and USGamer. When she’s not writing about memes, she edits Unwinnable’s monthly magazine. You can follow her on Twitter @pithyalyse.