Lawsuit against Cathy Hummels: "I see myself as a women's magazine"

At the start of the trial against Cathy Hummels, the judge doubts the argumentation of the complaint about unauthorized advertising - and compares influencers with a disease.

On the first day of trial against Instagram celebrity Cathy Hummel, the presiding judge, Monika Rhein, hinted at the hearing that she had doubts about the plaintiffs' association's (VSW) plaintive association. She compared the influencer with a women's magazine.

Traditional media can name product names in editorial posts without being considered unauthorized advertising, the judge explained. "Have you ever read Brigitte Online? There are links without end." Hummels gratefully took up the argument: "That's how I see myself, as a women's magazine," she said after the trial.

The VSW has warned the wife of football player Mats Hummels, because she had in about a dozen Instagram posts for their 465,000 followers called the manufacturer of their shoes and clothing and linked the websites of the companies. These "controversial" contributions are all about products for which the player has received no consideration in his own words. This includes a pullover of the luxury brand Miu Miu.

However, the Berlin-based association accuses her of unauthorized advertising. "That should already be marked in the individual contributions", said the commissioned by the VSW lawyer Franz Burchert.


Cathy Hummels in the courtroom of the Landgericht München

"In the past, influenza was a disease, today it is a job profile," commented Chairwoman Rhein right at the beginning of the trial. The followers are clear that Hummels' Instagram account is not private, but commercial.

On the other hand, there is no dispute over the advertising contracts that Hummels has concluded with several fashion companies. Because the Instagram contributions to their products characterizes the former presenter as a "paid partnership". Hummels emphasized, "I do it all honestly and transparently." Your argument: Without consideration of the manufacturer also no advertising.

The Association Social Competition is known among competition lawyers for its warnings. In addition to Hummels, the association has in recent months also involved fitness model Pamela Reif and other celebrities of the influencer scene in legal disputes. The verdict on his lawsuit against Hummels is scheduled to fall on April 29.