LOS ANGELES, California, April 27. OLYMPIC legends Mark Spitz and Janet Evans are two of 18 Olympians listed in a lawsuit against Samsung Corp. over alleged misuse of their names and images, according to a report by The Associate Press.
The lawsuit was filed Wednesday in Los Angeles Superior Court over a Facebook app called the Samsung Olympic Genome Project, in which people can see how they are connected to various Olympians. The other swimmers listed in the lawsuit are Amanda Beard, Jessica Hardy, Dara Torres, Jason Lezak, Cullen Jones, Eric Shanteau, Caroline and Clark Burckle, Brooke Bennett, Kristy Kowal, Kim Vandenberg, Aaron Peirsol and Brad Schumacher.
Richard Foster, an attorney for the plaintiffs, said Samsung's procedures “consisted of sending an email to some of the plaintiffs, in which they were told of the Genome Project and advised that they would be a part of the project unless they 'opted out.'”
He said several of the athletes returned the opt-out letter saying they didn't want to participate, but were included anyway, while others deleted the email without reading it.
The athletes are looking for compensation for licensing fees and a percentage of gross sales from Samsung products since the date of the app's launch.