Bands Settle on TM Dispute

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X-Factor boy-band One Direction have settled their trade mark dispute with a US punk group of the same name.

Earlier this year, the US band filed a claim for trade mark infringement on the basis of a US trade mark registration and the UK band’s marketing in the USA which the US band allege was leading to confusion in their home market. One Direction’s (UK) management company, Simon Cowell’s SYCO Entertainment, counterclaimed on the basis that One Direction (UK) had been consistently using their name since late 2010 and that these activities extended to the US market, including registrations for Facebook and Twitter accounts.

Following settlement, the US group published a statement on their website and will now be known as Uncharted Shores. 

The problem is not a new one, with related disputes arising over the names of bands such as Bucks Fizz, Suede and Sugababes.

It illustrates the general need to have a freedom-to-use search done before using a brand name, as well as applying for a trade mark registration. The cost involved is likely to be minuscule compared with the cost of defending an infringement action and/or re-branding.

Agile IP’s trade mark attorneys will be happy to advise and assist.  Please contact us.