New Lawsuit Rules That College Athletes Deserve Money For Their Image
On this episode of “Things I Learned Today,” I’m talking about college sports, and why athletes deserve to be paid for the use of their image. Now, as I learned today, a California judge in a United States District Court agrees with that idea as well, stating that college athletes deserve money for their image, or at least, for the public, for-profit usage of it.
As you probably know, or at least believe you know, Universities around the country who claim to be “non-profit” are most certainly for profit. This includes the schools that are partially state-funded (almost all of them), and amongst their billions of dollars of revenue coming from various athletic programs, students are entitled to absolutely nothing, despite it being those very same students that make such profits possible.
While some manage to get into college on a scholarship, the vast majority of college athletes have no such money attached to their presence at the university. Yet, despite not receiving free tuition, they are also not entitled to any monetary benefits that go along with being on a winning football team (although the success of the team is irrelevant in this argument unless there are no profits made at all from the team as a result of their record).
Simply put, the NCAA has been taking advantage of students. This is just known. Anyone who’s been to college, paid even the smallest bit of attention to college sports, or has interacted with departments that involve funding such programs (myself, having some experience in all three of these things) understands that the NCAA facilitates and manufactures an intentionally flawed system. They love it, because they’ve effectively generated a system of indentured servitude that is not only widely accepted around the world, but is contributed to by every single one of the billions that watch college athletics every year. NCAA system strives in their sole purpose of existence, which is to promote “amateurism.”
It’s the perfect business model, if you support such a practice. The best possible economic scenario: national exposure of its product, insane revenues, and virtually zero expenditure on payroll. The NCAA has even gone as far as to develop a new designation for athletes in order to avoid Workers Compensation claims, by adding the “student-athlete” designation. This feat of linguistics ensured that athletes would not be technically under the employ of various member universities and consequently not covered by Workers Compensation. It’s a heartless organization that millions of people contribute to and support every single year by watching the games, and purchasing merchandise.
Now that’s not to say that all colleges and universities are “rolling in the money”on a yearly basis. However, the schools that have their games televised nationally are. The schools that have their players featured on the cover of video games and sports memorabilia worldwide, are. That’s the difference. The case isn’t made to suggest that college athletes should be paid large sums of money simply for playing the sport. It’s suggesting that any instance in which the student’s image is being used to rake in millions for a university, shall be considered an instance for which compensation to the players is due.
This court ruling goes one step in the right direction. Hopefully, in due time, ANY person who becomes the sole point of interest for the purposes of corporate profit will be required, by law, to be compensated for their image.
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