50 Cent is in hot water over an advertisement. The rapper has on Friday July 20th filed a $1 million lawsuit against Internet advertising company Traffix Inc. for using his image without permission in the graphic "Shoot the Rapper" ad, which he claims promotes violence and threatens his safety.
The ad for "Shoot the Rapper" game, as stated in the lawsuit filed in New York State Court, features a cartoon representation of 50 Cent and the message "shoot the Rapper and you will WIN $US5,000 ($A5,692.5) or 5 RINGTONES GUARANTEED". The ad invites users to use their computer mouse to aim and fire at the rapper. And if they fire successfully, the screen becomes bathed in red and users then redirected to the Traffix website.
The rapper's lawyer, Peter Raymond, says the game doesn't use 50 Cent's name, but "it looks like him, and there's no doubt the character is intended to be him", which suggesting that he endorses the game though he actually not. "For all those reasons, he is personally offended," the lawyer said.
The "vile, tasteless and despicable" use of 50 Cent's image was "completely unauthorized" and "quite literally calls for violence against" him, the lawsuit says further.
Due to such fact, not only 50 Cent is seeking a $1 million in actual damages, but also a permanent injunction against the use of his image without permission, and unspecified punitive damages.
Traffix Inc.'s lawyer, Ezio Scaldaferri, told reporters that he had not yet seen the suit thus wouldn't comment.