KTDA to pay Sh1.5 million for using a woman’s photo without her consent

Ann Njoki Kumena
[Photo: Courtesy]
Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) will pay a woman Sh1.5 million for using her photo for marketing purposes without her approval.

Kerugoya High Court Judge Justice Lucy Gitari said that KTDA infringed on Ann Njoki Kumena’s rights when they used her image on its marketing brochures without her approval.

The judge noted that KTDA should have acquired permission from Ms Kumena to use her image for commercial purposes.

“Having considered the purpose for which the photograph was used which was for commercial purposes, a reasonable award ought to be given to the plaintiff. I find that an award of Sh1,500,000 is reasonable in the circumstances,” said Justice Lucy.

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Ms Kumena claimed the agency unlawfully took her pictures and used her images for financial gain.

KTDA, however, denied the claim saying the photo was not copyrighted; therefore, she is not entitled to any royalties.

The Judge said Ms Kumenya demonstrated that KTDA unlawfully took the photo without her approval and used it for advertisement purposes without compensating her. She ordered that KTDA also pay the legal costs that Ms Kumena incurred to seek justice in court.

Last year, a court ordered Kenya Orient Insurance Limited to pay Sh500,000 to Kevin Mungai for using his photo on Facebook without his consent.

Mr Mungai, through his lawyer Titus Koceyo, told the court that the insurer took his photo when he went to collect a mobile phone he had taken for repair and later posted them on Facebook without his consent.

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The ruling was published on Thursday by Kenya Law.

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