Photographer says Mike Boogie “brazenly displayed the theft” of her photos on TV

Big Brother 7 winner and newly minted millionaire Mike “Boogie” Malin is being sued, along with his business partners, for using a photographer’s work without permission at Geisha House, their restaurant.

“Jodi Cobb has filed a complaint for copyright infringement against Hollywood eatery Geisha House alleging that pictures hung throughout the restaurant are rip-offs of her famous geisha girl pieces featured in National Geographic and in books,” according to The Hollywood Reporter, Esq. There are, the paper says, “copies of her photos prominently throughout the premises, especially a version of her signature ‘Lips’ photograph, which is allegedly on the restaurant’s business cards, matchbooks, menus and chopsticks holders.”

The federal lawsuit notes that Mike specifically “brazenly displayed the theft on a T-shirt featuring an infringing copy of the ‘Lips’ photograph while appearing in the reality television show ‘Big Brother.'”

Mike’s business partner Lonnie Moore tells the paper that the photographer “wanted too much money” for their photograph so they had their own made. “It’s similar, but it’s different,” he said.

Photographer Alleges Geisha House Photos Infringe [The Hollywood Reporter, Esq.]

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.