Puma India used images of Anushka Sharma wearing athleisure fits by the brand for marketing purposes, by posting it on their social handles and adding a CTA to buy products at their upcoming sale.
Anushka Sharma is not the official brand ambassador of Puma India, and the images were picked up from either her personal handle or the ones clicked by celebrity photographers. In all of the images used the brand logo is prominently visible, and when coupled with a CTA, it comes across as a marketing campaign.
According to the actress who boasts over 60 Mn followers on Instagram, neither this was a paid partnership, nor was the brand permitted to use the photographs. Currently, there has been no declaration of legal action on the brand by her or YRF Talent, the agency that manages the actress.
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The unethical use of celebrity clout has always been a concern for talent management companies and popular celebrities. There have been several cases in the past when brands have used celebrity images for promotional campaigns without due diligence. The most recent one is the Louis Vuitton campaign featuring Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.
A similar practice was observed when PV Sindhu won the Bronze medal for Women’s Singles and several brands engaged in the unauthorized use of her name and pictures.
Anushka Sharma calling out Puma India demonstrates the practice being continued in the absence of a formal structure.