You see Albert Einstein's iconic image everywhere, from dolls to t-shirts to posters. He represents quixotic brilliance and there are substantial profits from selling Einstein's likeness. Unfortunately for his descendants, Einstein left the control of his estate in the hands of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, so they don't see a dime from the use of his image. Now, one of his granddaughters has taken her fight public trying to capture some of the estate's profits.
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"I'm outraged," said the younger Einstein, who says she is a 69-year-old cancer survivor and needs the money for health care. "It's hard for me to believe they would treat the family the way they have, which has been abysmally."
Her grandfather, the German-born physicist who formulated the general theory of relativity, bequeathed the literary rights for the more than 75,000 papers and other items in his estate to the Hebrew University of Jerusalem when he died in 1955.
The Israeli university owns the rights to his likeness, using a Los Angeles-based company called Greenlight, LLC to handle licensing for items such as Einstein apparel, mugs, puzzles, coins, posters and other collectibles.
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