The Walt Disney Company is suing Hannah and Christopher Martin for selling bootleg Disney merchandise. And now it looks like some other Disney Annual Passholders could potentially get tangled up in the mess, with photos and names of some members of the Martins’ group being used as evidence.
Clearly, the Martins’ “Secret Disney Group” wasn’t a secret from Disney’s lawyers.
According to TikTokker @violettarantula, Disney is using unredacted screenshots of group members as evidence against the Martins and is concerned that those members may wind up on the receiving end of a lifetime theme park ban as the Martins did.
Replying to @wdwpassholder The Martin’s are not being transparent with their members. #sparklingmembers #sparklingdreamers #christophermartin #hannahmartin #disneylawsuit #toxicdisneyfan #disney #disneyinfluencer #greenscreen
♬ Frolic (Theme from “Curb Your Enthusiasm” TV Show) – Luciano Michelini
The TikTokker contacted the Martins directly and claims that their question was ignored and deleted.
“Every single one of the posts are them using the Martins merchandise, and a lot of the posts mention that,” they said. “I asked Christopher directly; was he letting his members know that they were included within the exhibits of the lawsuit? He deflected, and he deleted my question.”
“Answering that question would not have hurt his side of the case at all. He just simply refused to answer it.”
While it’s likely that the social media screenshots are simply evidence that the Martins were selling and promoting the bootleg merch, there are potential consequences for Annual Passholders who knowingly participated in marketing the fake mouse ears.
“If you are a member of one of his groups and you are a fan… You need to know why your Annual Pass is at risk,” the TikTokker continues. “Within the Passholder rules, it says specifically that you cannot have the sale of goods or services, or display goods or services unless written approval has been obtained.”
While crafters selling unofficial Disney or Disney-inspired merchandise is nothing new, it’s alleged that the Martins took infringement to a new level by not making a proper distinction between their merch and official Disney merch, and that they ignored several cease-and-desist letters.
The takeaway for Disney fans should be that it’s always dicey to sell products using Disney’s intellectual property. And if they tell you to stop… you might want to stop before it gets to this point.
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