Fernando Sosa vs. Katy Perry is becoming the 2015 version of David and Goliath. That is, if David was a 3D printer sculptor from Florida and Goliath shot whipped cream out of his breasts.
Sosa, the man selling 3D-printed versions of the dance-challenged Left Shark in Katy Perry’s Super Bowl halftime show, isn’t giving up on his online commercial endeavor despite receiving a cease-and-desist letter from the pop star’s lawyers. And according to a legal rep for Sosa, the law is actually on his side.
“Federal courts and the United States Copyright Office have made clear that costumes are generally not copyrightable. Please tell me why you think the Left Shark costume should be treated differently,” reads the letter from Sosa’s lawyer to Perry’s lawyers. “Did Katy Perry design the Left Shark costume? If so, when?”
As a parenthetical, Sosa’s lawyer asks, “We also wonder what Katy Perry could possibly stand to gain from declaring war on an Internet meme, but that’s her business.”
The letter also points to an interview with Elle where Perry admitted the NFL had the final say on her halftime show. Sosa’s lawyers claim that the NFL, if anyone, has legal claim on Left Shark.
That’s great news for Sosa, because the NFL certainly isn’t litigious at all.
Either way, this gives an additional fortnight of infamy to a meme that has otherwise outlived its relevance.