A couple is suing Amazon and Apple because their engagement photo was used on the cover of an erotic fan-fiction football e-book.
The original cover, aka "a cover to remember" from A Gronking to Remember.
(via The Daily Beast/Amazon)
You see that happy couple above? That's their engagement photo on the cover of A Gronking to Remember, an erotic football e-book by an author writing under the pen name Lacey Noonan. The couple is suing Amazon and Apple, the publishers of the e-book, because it turns out that "becoming the face of a poorly written erotic football novel" was not one of the wedding gifts the couple registered for. In fact, the couple — referred to as John Roe and Jane Roe in their lawsuit — have no idea how their image ended up on the cover of the book.
A Gronking to Remember, in case you aren't aware, is an erotica novella that tried to capitalize on the popularity of Patriots' player Rob Grownkowski. It contains passages like this:
"Spike me, Daniel, through the goal posts of life."
"Like Gronk does."
"Do to me what Gronk does to a football."
"Here on the bed."
If the book was simply mediocre, the couple probably never would have discovered their picture. But A Gronking to Remember has that special mixture of awfulness, weirdness, and celebrity that Gronk-spiked it into popularity. You might remember Gronk himself reading the book on Jimmy Kimmel Live:
All of the ridiculousness aside, the lawsuit actually brings up some interesting questions about when a company does and does not count as a publisher, and whether or not Apple and Amazon can be liable for books that people self-publish through their services. If you want more information on that, The Hollywood Reporter has a good overview of the issue in their piece.