Advertising Law

White House lawyers reportedly protest selfie with Obama used for promotional purposes

White House lawyers reportedly protested to Samsung after the company promoted a baseball slugger’s selfie with President Obama.

Senior adviser Dan Pfeiffer mentioned the incident on “Face the Nation” on Sunday, the Washington Post reports at Morning Mix. “We’ve had conversations with Samsung about this and expressed our concerns,” he said. “We’ve left that conversation between the lawyers.”

The selfie was taken by Boston Red Sox player David Ortiz last week as he presented the president with a commemorative No. 44 jersey. Ortiz tweeted the selfie, and Samsung retweeted it with the caption “thrilled to see the special, historic moment David Ortiz captured with his Galaxy Note 3 during his White House visit.”

Ortiz later acknowledged he had a promotional deal with Samsung, but he said the selfie was spontaneous and not intended to be promotional, ESPN Sports reported.

White House secretary Jay Carney also noted White House objections to the photo in a press briefing last break. “I can tell you that as a rule the White House objects to attempts to use the president’s likeness for commercial purposes,” he said.

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