James Dean's Estate Sues Twitter Over Unofficial Account

The social media giant refuses to shut down the user's account.
3:00 | 02/09/14

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Transcript for James Dean's Estate Sues Twitter Over Unofficial Account
were thinking. To say the least. James dean died way before the invention of the internet, but the rebel without a cause is caught up in a strange, tricky and very modern legal question. Should people be allowed to tweet in the name of dead celebrities. Here's Alaska aditi Roy. You're tearing me apart. Reporter: He was the iconic team heartthrob of old Hollywood, and more than a half century after his death, actor James dean is making headlines. @James dean has 8,000 followers and sent out 2200 tweets. It's a fan running the site. That's not sitting well with some of his heirs. There's not an official Twitter site because it's misappropriated. They are suing Twitter claiming @James dean isn't trademarked, but they refuse to shut down the handle. They're fighting it, because they don't to want open the door to lots of claims of people saying, hey, this was a dead celebrity that needs protection and you're stealing our brand. And it's not the first time there's been confusion over Twitter hands with famous brands. For instance, at Heinz is a journalism professor with the same name as the ketchup manufacturer. ABC news tried reaching out to Twitter for comment, but didn't hear back. In court documents, Twitter doesn't have a user name reservation policy. There's no question this is a precedent-setting case. Reporter: Legal experts say the case in federal court could be ground breaking for other late celebrities making dean, a modern day rebel with a cause. For ABC news, aditi Roy, San Francisco. The legal system trying to keep up with technology. It's tough. It is. Turn now back to the

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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