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Photographer files lawsuit against Rihanna over ‘S&M’ video

 Singer Rihanna accepts the Favorite Soul/R&B Female Artist award onstage during the 2013 American Music Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on November 24, 2013 in Los Angeles, California.
(Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

The video for the 2010 single ‘S&M’ is landing Rihanna in court. According to a report by on Feb.15, photography Philipp Paulus has filed a lawsuit against the pop star over similarities between his work and her video.

The 22-year-old German photographer is referring to his fashion photography series titled Paperword. Paulus believes certain images in the video were directly copied from his own images. As a result he has filed for damages and for an injunction against Rihanna and Universal Music Group, who produced the video in 2011.

There will be similarities in artistic creativity, but Paulus’ lawyer, copyright specialist Philip Jakober, told a court in Germany that the record label admitted to the similarities between images in the video and the work of Paulus.

“The ludicrous thing about this situation is that Universal Music has for some time been bringing about a wave of lawsuits against end users for copyright infringements, yet as far as our case is concerned the usage from the photo series ‘Paperworld’ by Philipp Paulus in the music video ‘S&M’ is a serious and worldwide infringement of copyright, which is the responsibility of Universal Music,” said Jakober.

Since Universal Music did make an acceptable offer to settle the dispute out of court, the result of Paulus winning the case could bring about a ban of the ‘S&M’ video globally.

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