Marcella Ballard Maria R. Sinatra Sara Krastins November 28 2022 Court orders Playboy NFT counterfeiters to pay $1m in statutory damages Venable LLP | Intellectual Property - USA Marcella Ballard, Maria R. Sinatra, Sara Krastins Intellectual Property FactsDecisionCommentOn 13 October 2022, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York ordered a group of counterfeiters that were using unauthorised websites and social media accounts to dupe consumers into purchasing counterfeit Playboy non-fungible tokens (NFTs) to pay $1,050,000 in statutory damages.FactsNFTs are unique data assets that are stored on a digital ledger and can be bought and sold by the public. NFTs are purchased in connection with cryptocurrency, which is universal digital currency that exists entirely online.The fake NFTs sold by the counterfeiters purported to be authentic versions of Playboy's Rabbitars NFT collection. Rabbitars are a unique collection of 11,953 non-fungible rabbits inspired by Playboy iconography, heritage and lore. Each Rabbitar is granted more than 175 traits, including fur, ears, facial expressions, apparel, accessories and occupation-related characteristics. Some of the rarest Rabbitar traits are inspired by culturally significant aspects of Playboy's art and editorial history.The counterfeiters copied the contents of Playboy's authentic Rabbitars website and utilised some of Playboy's authentic social media accounts to confuse consumers into purchasing the defendants' counterfeit NFTs.DecisionIn addition to statutory damages, the Honorable Judge Victor Marrero of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York permanently enjoined the defendants from selling counterfeit Playboy products and engaging in acts designed to confuse consumers into believing that they are affiliated with, sponsored by or associated with Playboy when they are not.CommentWith this win, Playboy reaffirms its strong stance in pursuing the protection of its IP rights against infringers.For further information on this topic please contact Marcella Ballard, Maria Sinatra or Sara Krastins at Venable LLP by telephone (+1 410 244 7400) or email ([email protected], [email protected] or [email protected]). The Venable LLP website can be accessed at www.venable.com.