Naked bike ride video prompts lawsuit

    Several thousands of photos were taken by major news outlets, bloggers, and the riders themselves. But Naked Bike Ride organizers are taking issue with a video production company selling DVDs.

    The Philadelphia Naked Bike Ride happened two weeks ago but its effect still lingers. The loosely organized Labor Day weekend event attracted about a thousand people to take off their clothes and ride bicycles through the city. But now, a lawsuit is brewing.

    Several thousands of photos were taken by major news outlets, bloggers, and the riders themselves. But Naked Bike Ride organizers are taking issue with a video production company selling DVDs.

    Wild About Philly TV shot footage and interviewed riders for a documentary it is now selling over the internet. Ride organizers characterize the video as prurient and sexual – not in the spirit of the event. They’re asking riders to take action against Wild About Philly TV for using their image without consent.

    Steve Shapiro a media lawyer with Schnader Harrison Segal and Lewis, says the riders may not have much of a legal case.

    “Anyone has a right to photograph anything they see from a public location. Seems to me it would be difficult for someone who rode through the streets of Philadelphia to argue that they had a reasonable expectation of privacy to do that.”

    Regardless of privacy issues, Shapiro says Free Speech rights make it highly unlikely a court would prevent Wild About Philly from selling DVDs. Ride organizers will ask the company to pull the video voluntarily.

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