No Doubt, Activision settle on Band Hero suit

In a short but sweet announcement, a lawsuit surrounding Band Hero has been settled. Grammy-winning band No Doubt has settled with Activision over the use of the band’s likenesses, including vocalist and fashionista Gwen Stefani.

Band Hero

No Doubt as they appear in Band Hero

The band took issue – as others have – with the way the game allowed players to use Gwen’s avatar to perform songs by other artists, most noticably the Rolling Stones’ Honky Tonk Woman. The original lawsuit claimed that users were able to create “an unauthorised performance by the Gwen Stefani avatar in a male voice boasting about having sex with prostitutes”.

According to the band, the musicians signed off allowing Band Hero to use their likenesses – but only to perform three No Doubt tunes: Don’t Speak, Excuse Me Mr. and smash-hit single Just A Girl. Instead, they claim Activision, through the game’s character manipulation, turns the band into nothing more than “a virtual karaoke circus act”.

This is pretty much the same problem that Courtney Love has had with Guitar Hero 5, with late husband Kurt Cobain’s avatar unlockable in that game. Courtney never actually took the case to court.

Predictably, Activision denied all wrong-doing. A judge saw otherwise, earlier this year, deciding that No Doubt had a case of breach of contract, violation of publicity rights and fraud, with a court date scheduled for Monday October 15th.

On Monday, Gwen and bandmates Tony Kanal, Tom Dumont and Adrian Young reached a settlement with the publisher – and neither No Doubt or Activision were available for comment.

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