Larry Flynt has won a jury verdict in a four-day trial over his nephew’s violation of his trademark and invasion of his privacy. Flynt prevailed on the trademark case. One of the more interesting aspects of the trial was Flynt’s admission that (while his company is worth many millions of dollars) he fired his brother and his nephews’ father, Jimmy Flynt Sr.,to help pay for the costs of suing his sons.
Flynt testifed at trial that “I told him that this lawsuit was going to be expensive to finance it, and the only way I could was to not have him working for the company,” Flynt testified during the trial.
The trial itself showed a steady stream of porn on a big-screen TV. Flynt told the jury that his name stood for quality porn and his nephews were cheapening it with “trashy” movies. It appears that Flynt is the Shakespeare of the skin trade.
The jury ruled against Flynt’s nephews, Jimmy Flynt Jr. and his brother, Dustin Flynt, on the infringement claim for using the word “FLYNT” in large capital letters above the titles. They rejected the privacy claim.
Flynt’s attorney, Mark Hoffman, insisted that “this has been very hard on Mr. Flynt. He never wanted to go this far. All he wanted to do was the right thing.”
The nephews launched their own business after their uncle fired them from executive positions at Larry Flynt Publications in November 2007. Jimmy Jr., 37, had worked there for 17 years and brother Dustin, 34, had been there 10 years.
I continue to find it astonishing how sweeping these claims have become. Their name is Flynt. I am not sure why, if they did not include symbols indicating that it was their uncle’s business, that they are not allowed to use their own name. I am assuming that, if they added a disclaimer that it was not associated with their uncle, that they would have had a stronger case.
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