Selling Original Michael Jackson Poem/Pic

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  • hello. I have written an original poem about Michael Jackson. I would like to have an artist paint an original photo of Mr. jackson and place my poem next to it, and offer it for sale (prints) on the internet.
    Is this legal?
    It's my poem, and the picture would be an original, not tracing or copying an already existing one.
    If it is not legal, do you think MJ's estate would entertain a split in profits?
    Any advice would be much appreciated.


  • I think that the main issue with this would be dealing with the right of publicity or personality, rather than copyright. I'm not an expert in those, but my understanding is that they vary from state to state, with some states not offering that right at all, and some not offering it after a person's death. This makes it difficult if you want to sell through the internet, since there might be multiple, quite different, laws to follow. I would recommend checking which states don't have laws on this, at least initially, and would recommend contacting a lawyer before selling in states that do have the right of publicity or personality.

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