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Abstract

This paper explores the protection of personality rights in Canada in two ways: first, by attempting to clarify the Canadian law on personality rights. The extent to which personality rights are protected across Canada is unclear, and the legal situation varies across the various Canadian jurisdictions. The second part of this paper focuses on explaining the theoretical basis for protecting personality rights. As will be seen by looking at the statutes, court judgments, and surrounding literature, there are mixed views about whether personality rights are rooted in principles of privacy, or whether they are of a proprietary nature. The theoretical foundation through which personality rights are protected will have a practical effect on some of the elements of their protection. Thus, this paper emphasized that in jurisdictions where personality rights have not been adequately addressed, the court or legislature will need to be clear on the theory to which they subscribe in order to determine the approach that will be taken in protecting these rights.