Harris Faulkner, the Fox News anchor, is suing Hasbro because she believes they made a toy hamster in her likeness and named it “Harris Faulkner.” While the names are the same, which is not a violation of any laws, Faulkner is insulting herself if she thinks she looks like this toy hamster.
Faulkner’s looks sit somewhere between exotic and classy, which makes for one beautiful woman. For her to say that she thinks this hamster bares a resemblance to her would make one wonder if she suffers from low self-esteem. Anyway she feels it is worth $5 million dollars and that is what she and her lawyers are looking for, according to Jezebel.com on October 27.
The hamster is a toy and you’d be hard pressed for any kid, except maybe her own or a relative, to come up with her name when shown a picture of the anchor. So it is not as if Hasbro was trying to get more mileage from sales by naming the hamster Harris Faulkner.
According to MSN News today, “In a partial motion to dismiss filed in New Jersey federal court on Monday, the defendant showed the judge side-by-side photos of the fictional hamster toy and real-life adult woman and asked the judge to see that they share nothing in common.”
The hamster in question belongs to the Little Pet Shop collection, and again it is marketed to kids probably no older than 10. On Fox News Faulkner is a popular anchor, but kids aren’t running to buy a hamster because it has her name. So why would Hasbro want a hamster that looks like her, there’s no motive for sales?
The lawsuit was filed in August and Hasbro has maintained a hard stand with this hamster and they are not budging. They claim it was in no way developed with Fox’s Harris Faulkner in mind. It just so happens she has the same name. Faulkner thinks this hamster is “detrimental to her reputation” and she also thinks it was a mean thing to do. The Fox host wants Hasbro to do away with this hamster and apparently hand over $5 million to make up for their use of her likeness.
Faulkner believes that this hamster does “bear a physical resemblance to [her] traditional professional appearance, in particular [the] tone of its complexion, the shape of its eyes, and the design of its eye makeup.”
Faulkner demanded that Hasbro stop using her name and likeness back in January, but the toy was still on the market three weeks later, the lawsuit states. She also said she never gave Hasbro to use her name and likeness. Hasbro said in their motion:
“Because name-sameness is not enough to state a claim for a violation of one’s right of publicity under well-established law, and because Ms. Faulkner’s attempt to claim that the hamster toy misappropriates her likeness is implausible on its face, Ms. Faulkner’s Third Cause of Action alleging a violation of her right of publicity fails to state a claim for which relief can be granted and should be dismissed with prejudice.”
Now it Faulkner’s turn to respond. It might be surprising to Faulkner’s fans out there that she would actually believe this hamster resembles her in any way, shape or form. She always presents as a woman of high intellect balanced with good common sense. Why would she think she looks like a hamster?