In a case which garnered national attention, Ramp & Pisani represented a New Jersey mother who appeared in an instructional breast-feeding video, only to have the video taken by a third party, turned into pornography and reposted on the Internet. It is a cautionary tale of the perils of being filmed in the social media age.
In the case, the New Jersey mother and her daughter, less than a month old at the time, voluntarily appeared in an educational and informational video about breastfeeding produced by the Meredith Corporation, the publisher of Better Homes and Gardens, Family Circle, and Parent Magazine. Prior to the video shoot, the mother was concerned about where the video would be shown and if the corporation would use her full name. Prior to the shoot, the mother alleged that the company represented to her that they would only use her first name and would not use her full name.
Based upon this representation, she and her infant daughter appeared in the video. Contrary to this representation, the company used the mother’s and infant’s first and last name in the video.
As a result, a rogue, faceless person, who seripticiously stole the video, was able to link the mother and infant to pornography because the video contained their first and last names.
Ramp & Pisani filed a multi-count complaint on behalf of the mother and infant alleging Common Law Fraud/Misrepresentation, Negligent Misrepresentation, Breach of Contract, Invasion of Privacy, Negligent Infliction of Emotional Distress, and Equitable Fraud. The company responded by filing a Motion to Dismiss the Complaint arguing that they were not responsible for the actions of a third-party.
A year after the filing, the court denied the company’s motion to dismiss. Discovery ensued, and, thereafter, a trial date was set. Prior to trial, the parties resolved the case.