WSOP Bracelet Winner Sues Harrah’s, WSOP Academy

by , Oct 28, 2009 | 6:20 pm

Use of Sally Anne Boyer’s image is what’s in dispute.

Sally Anne Boyer, 2007 WSOP Ladies’ World Champion, filed a suit Monday against Harrah’s and the WSOP Academy, claiming they’ve used her name and likeness without authorization, and falsely claiming she’s a graduate of the Academy.

Boyer contends that she only attended the first day of the two-day Ladies Academy event, never completing the course, so was not a graduate. Post Oak Productions, the company that produces the WSOP Academy produced an email from August 2007 from Boyer asking to mail a picture of her in ‘poker tournament attire’ to use for further promotions.

More details available from the Las Vegas Sun.

14 Comments to “WSOP Bracelet Winner Sues Harrah’s, WSOP Academy”

  1. DanM

    Wow, this should be a pretty interesting case. In part because she seems to be basing it on semantics … the difference between “graduate” and “alumna” or even “dropout” … and because it may depend on the relationship between WSOP Academy and the WSOP.

    When you walk into the Amazon Room, you pretty much surrender all your rights — Harrah’s can do just about anything with your image.

    Here’s a video of her after her win, where she is wearing a WSOP-Academy patch … and signing its praises:

  2. Kevin Mathers

    I watched this final table (it’s still on the site), and this was one of the worst final tables ever (even though it included future bracelet winners Katja Thater and Vanessa Selbst). I believe this was also the year Gary Wise wrote his article about women’s tournaments and the brouhaha that caused.

  3. Uncle Ray

    It doesn’t look to me like the difference between grad and alum as much as attendee and grad. If you are considered a grad by just showing up (and showing up for one of 2 days at that) then so be it.

    The real issue is what is the truth AND what was agreed to. If the ad that supposedly quotes her and calls her a grad is the one that she e-mailed a response that didn’t dispute it, in fact okayed it, she doesn’t have any credibility. However, if the ad is something she did not agree was ok AND is untrue, she has a good case.

    No matter what rights you “surrender to Harrah’s” when you enter, they still can’t lie about what you did or what you said without possible repercussions.

    I’m generally against the influx of lawsuits. The massive number of them cheapen conflicts that SHOULD result in lawsuits, but strangely now, in the last couple of battles that have made it to Pokerati I have come down on the side of the suer. I don’t know why.

  4. Uncle Ray

    And Dan, still hangin’ on to the beard, eh?

  5. scott diamond

    I believe it costs money to go to the WSOP Academy so if she paid she attended. There are no “Graduation” ceremonies like in school and I do not think you even get a certificate for attending.

    Also, they great investigative work above (Video) she is wearing a WSOP Academy patch!! Allegedly she E-Mailed her picture to the Academy so there was possibly communication regarding the use of her picture.

    If I were a presiding Judge in these matters of frivolous lawsuits I would make sure party 1 paid ALL the costs for time wasted by all parties involved. This would stop unwarranted lawsuits by those looking to get attention and a free bankroll!

    As usual, good work Kevmath and Dan keep us posted please.

    Dan, I have been away from my computer lately, has there been any rumors to someone purchasing Poker Pages?

  6. Kevin Mathers

    Start at the 7:53:00 mark, when Howard David mentions she’s a WSOP Academy graduate, she nods her head and says “Yes I am”.

  7. Andrew

    “I would love to comment in detail, but our lawyers won’t let us. Suffice it to say, we were absolutely shocked that this suit was filed, the suit is entirely baseless, and look forward being entirely vindicated when all of the facts come out in court. In the interim, we have to let the contradictions between the claim and the claimant’s own words (on youtube or on a variety of other sites) speak for themselves, and trust that the poker community will see this for what it is.” — WSOPA

  8. DanM

    Thanks Andrew. Where’d that come from?

  9. Andrew

    An email from them.

  10. scott diamond

    Is she now going to sue Pokerati because you posted her picture?

  11. DanM

    We can only hope so … will be good for traffic!

  12. Mean Gene

    I can kinda imagine Lionel Hutz being her attorney, seeing that video, then slamming his fist down on the table and saying “Next time you tell me everything!”

  13. Earl Burton

    I believe that Boyer doesn’t have a leg to stand on. Have seen the e-mail and video and it sure looks as though she has accepted some sort of deal.

    Now the question becomes did she get fully paid for her likeness being used. I could see a lawsuit on that matter but, as far as them wrongfully using her likeness, it seems that she’s already allowed that to go forth.

  14. Earl Burton

    Oh, according to some people I have talked to, her attorneys were not told about the existence of either the e-mail or the video.