Celebrity magazine

Court orders French celebrity magazine to pay homeless man €40,000

Since its creation in 1949, the emblematic French weekly Paris Match published countless photos of the rich and powerful – and from time to time, a paparazzi photo could cost them dearly.

This time, instead, it was a homeless man asking the magazine to pay VIP money for posting a photo of him without his permission. Last week, a court in Nanterre, west of the French capital, ordered Paris Match to pay 40,000 euros to the man for having published his photo, as part of an investigative article on crack addiction in Paris.

“Any person, whatever their degree of notoriety, their fortune, their present or future profession, has the right to their private life and enjoys an exclusive right to their image which allows them to oppose its use. without prior authorization,” the court wrote in its decision.

The photo, published without the man’s consent in January 2018, showed the unnamed 48-year-old man smoking crack on a metro platform in northern Paris. Unlike other people in the photo, her face was not blurred, the daily The Parisian reports.

Alerted by friends who recognized him in the Paris Match article, the homeless man sued the magazine: In May 2019, the magazine was ordered to pay him 10,000 euros in damages, but did not remove the photo from its website and app, which resulted in an additional fine of 30,000 euros last week.

The Parisian quoted the man as saying he had used some of the money to “help friends” and now may be able to “get his wife and children back.”