It has been confirmed that the NFL have stepped up their legal action against MIA with the American Arbitration Association on Friday (March 14). The Hollywood Reporter states that the NFL are demanding $15.1m in “restitution” on top of the $1.5m (£900,000) they were already chasing for breach of contract.
The NFL claims that the additional $15m covers “the alleged value of public exposure she received by appearing for an approximately two minute segment during Madonna’s performance,” stating that, “The figure is based on what advertisers would have paid for ads during this time.”
In response, MIA’s spokesperson has said that the claim, “lacks any basis in law, fact, or logic.” Adding that the “continued pursuit of this proceeding is transparently an exercise by the NFL intended solely to bully and make an example of Respondents for daring to challenge NFL”.
The statement also refers to various other explicit moments from previous Super Bowl performances as well as a recent fine issued to a player found to have used racially aggressive language on the field.
Tweeting about the story earlier today (March 17), MIA sent a message to Madonna which reads: “ummm ….. can i borrow 16 million ?”
@madonna ummm ….. can i borrow 16 million ?
— M.I.A (@MIAuniverse) March 17, 2014
MIA had previously accused the American football governing body of making a “scapegoat” of her. When news of the legal action was first revealed, MIA’s lawyer Howard King stated that the singer would soon go public about the ongoing battle. On September 23 2013 she uploaded a video of herself talking on the phone to an unnamed person about the incident. In the video, MIA was seen wearing an Oakland Raiders top and accusing the NFL of a “massive display of corporation dick-shaking”, arguing that there were far more offensive images on show during the performance than that of her middle finger.