The Times reports that officials at Disney World, Florida, have been taking the name of intellectual property in vain. James Worley, a somewhat rotund 60-year old who sports a white beard was told that his resemblance to one Mr S Claus made him unwelcome on Disney premises.

Said Mr Worley:

“They told us Santa was considered a Disney character…Their statement to me was that I needed to alter my appearance . . . or I needed to leave the park because I was impersonating Santa Claus.”
Even after he removed his red hat, children still came up to him and asked him if he was St Nick.

Disney responded:

“Mr Worley came to the park to enjoy himself and we want him to experience that, but he was confusing a lot of our guests. We already have a Santa in the park and we asked him to quit posing as the same character . . . We had several guests who were very upset about it.”

The IPKat is frankly impressed if Disney has found a way to assert personality rights over a fictional character deeply embedded in Western culture.
NO HO HO NO HO HO Reviewed by Anonymous on Monday, December 18, 2006 Rating: 5


  1. I wouldn't rush to slam Disney too quickly. Was the guy dressed as Santa and diverting customers away from the 'real' (ie Disney employed) Santa ?

    Finally, what do you mean 'fictional' ? Are you aware just how many five year olds read IPKAT ?

  2. Disney doesn't just lay claim to fictional characters: if you believe in the resurrection of the dead, you will surely sympathise with poor Pocahontas - whose visits to Disneyworld would be a most unwelcome distraction for her new owners.

  3. From the story in the Times, it appears that the 'fake' Santa was wearing blue jeans, a shirt and the sort of repulsive red bobble hat thing that everyone tends to wear at this time of year.


All comments must be moderated by a member of the IPKat team before they appear on the blog. Comments will not be allowed if the contravene the IPKat policy that readers' comments should not be obscene or defamatory; they should not consist of ad hominem attacks on members of the blog team or other comment-posters and they should make a constructive contribution to the discussion of the post on which they purport to comment.

It is also the IPKat policy that comments should not be made completely anonymously, and users should use a consistent name or pseudonym (which should not itself be defamatory or obscene, or that of another real person), either in the "identity" field, or at the beginning of the comment. Current practice is to, however, allow a limited number of comments that contravene this policy, provided that the comment has a high degree of relevance and the comment chain does not become too difficult to follow.

Learn more here:

Powered by Blogger.