Jury to hear No Doubt's case against Activision's Band Hero

Pop rock band's ongoing lawsuit against the video game company for its avatar-unlocking feature is set to go in front of a jury.

Activision's Band Hero game image. GameSpot

No Doubt's lawsuit against Activision is going to be heard by a jury.

The pop rock band sued gaming giant Activision in 2009 on allegations that the company's game Band Hero lets players convert the avatars "into a virtual karaoke circus act." The case has been ongoing ever since, and today Superior Court Judge Ramona See ruled that the decision will now be up to a jury, according to the Associated Press.

The lawsuit was first brought when No Doubt claimed that Activision didn't tell the pop musicians that players would be able to unlock the band's avatars and use them to perform other artist's music.

No Doubt specifically took issue with the ability for gamers to have lead singer Gwen Stefani perform the Rolling Stones' "Honky Tonk Women." The suit claims that it "results in an unauthorized performance by the Gwen Stefani avatar in a male voice boasting about having sex with prostitutes."

Activision claims it's not at fault and that unlocking avatars is nothing new in the gaming industry. According to the Associated Press, the company's lawyer said Activision has a video recording of when it told No Doubt about the game's unlocking feature.

During today's hearing Judge See rejected Activision's motions to dismiss some of the claims in the case, such as fraud, violation of publicity rights, and breach of contract. However, See also rejected No Doubt's motion to file an injunction banning Activision from allowing the unlocking feature that lets band avatars perform other musician's work.

The case is expected to go to trial later this year, according to the Associated Press.

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Gaming
About the author

Dara Kerr is a staff writer for CNET focused on the sharing economy and tech culture. She grew up in Colorado where she developed an affinity for collecting fool's gold and spirit animals.

 

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