I made a post calling out MGA Entertainment’s apparent misappropriation of my likeness on 6/7/20. Today I am here to report that the post was removed from Instagram last night. MGA went around social media filing BS copyright claims regarding the photos I used for the doll to try to silence me, when what I’m doing obviously falls under fair use. But that’s OK because I got my own doll and took a took a picture myself 🙃! So I’m sharing this again, in as many places as I can, because I refuse to be silenced!
Since our original post, MGA made a very aggressive attempt to contact us, and then within the hour (before we had a chance to respond) began spreading lies about me and my motivation in bringing this issue to light.
Given that they’ve shown us no reason to trust them, I decided that it would be a bad idea to engage them without a lawyer. We are currently in the process of hiring one now. Click here if you would like to help.
***READ ORIGINAL POST***
L.O.L. Surprise created a doll based on my entire image and identity without my permission. And I haven’t received any acknowledgment or compensation from them in any way. In fact, they are straight up ignoring me. Here are the facts;
1) I wore my hair like this and shared the photos on social media from Nov 2018 to Feb 2019.
2) In April 2019 LOL surprise reached out to me and hired me to be a guest on their YouTube channel for a kids interior design show.
3) Then in July of 2019 they released the Rainbow Raver” doll as a part of their “Hair Goals” collection and it looks exactly like me.
4) I found out about this because I started to receive messages asking me if I knew about the doll, and its striking resemblance to me and my unique hair and outfits.
Having huge corporations make money off my ideas and identity, while I struggle financially as a Black freelance artist and content creator, has been both infuriating and devastating, to say the least. This happened just after I learned I was autistic and I was still trying to figure out what that even meant. I didn’t really have the space to speak up about the situation publicly.
We did reach out to both L.O.L. Surprise and their parent company MGA Entertainment via every channel that was available to us. Not only did they ignore us, but L.O.L. Surprise unfollowed me!
This behavior alone is obviously predatory and reprehensible, but the fact that they had the nerve to make a lazy post claiming to care about injustices done to Black people proves that they are also liars.
This sort of thing happens to Black creative more than you could possibly imagine and WE ARE TIRED! Change doesn’t happen by posting some stale, vague, insincere, corporate BS statement on your Instagram, and then going back to business as usual. I’m tired of people like me being forced to speak up to hold these greedy corporations accountable, because they refuse to do the work themselves!
L.O.L.Surprise, you are not special or inclusive simply because you are keen to make money off of Black children and their families. If you really champion inclusivity and actually care about Black people, prove it by making this right!