Who owns that batting average?
Question: What could be more All-American than fantasy baseball? Answer: A legal feud over the player stats that fuel the billion dollar industry. Ars Technica traces the surprising controversy from its roots during the golden age of Topps trading cards to the current dispute between Major League Baseball and CBC Distribution and Marketing, owner of fantasy sports site CDMsports.com. The bottom line question is whether players own their stats in the same way that they own their images.

Both MLB and the players' union argue the stats are theirs to sell, but prior case law suggests that the First Amendment protects "publishing statistics, even for business purposes." Should MLB win in the current case, Ars points out that "the ramifications could extend to how or if a real person may be portrayed in a book or movie, or even whether certain questions such as those concerning baseball players could be used in a game like Trivial Pursuit or Jeopardy."
Posted by Oliver Ryan 10:38 AM 0 Comments comment | Add a Comment

To send a letter to the editor about The Browser, click hereTop of page

Got a news tip? Send it to The Browser


Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer.

Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved.

Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved.

Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2014 and/or its affiliates.

Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer.

Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved.

Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved.

Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2014 and/or its affiliates.