After learning that the painter Yiğit Mohaç Yücel would sell a portrait of Cem Karaca on the famous NFT sales platform “Open Sea,” Emrah Karaca filed a lawsuit in the Istanbul 3rd Civil Court of Intellectual and Industrial Rights, through his lawyer Görkem Gökçe.
The court’s conclusion was that the portrait made by Yücel, which was put up for sale as an NFT, was prepared based on a photograph of Cem Karaca and that his appearance was commercialized, therefore, it violates the Law of Intellectual Property Rights.
And then the court decided to block the access to the websites where the portrait of Cem Karaca was used without permission and to prevent the sale of the NFT portrait.
Speaking about the decision, Gökçe, who is an expert in IT and technology law, stated that the decision was a cornerstone, adding, “As far as we know, this decision is the first preliminary injunction regarding NFT in Türkiye. In fact, the decision can set an example in the world. Because although there are still some legal uncertainties about NFTs all over the world and there are very few examples in this regard, the court’s decision shows that the judiciary has a strong reflex on such issues.”
Referring to the importance of the decision on the legal nature of NFTs, Gökçe said, “Although the legal nature of NFTs is highly controversial, with this decision, the court accepted that NFTs have an asset value that can be subject to enforcement law. Although the decision is in our favor, it is still a precautionary measure, and we are excitedly following the continuation of the trial.”
Cem Karaca, one of the prominent figures of “Anatolian rock,” died on Feb. 8, 2004, at the age of 58. During his lifetime, he recorded 24 albums and performed hundreds of concerts. He was known for his signature felt hat, big brown glasses and long wavy hair.