Grunge band, Nirvana, is suing designer Marc Jacobs’ over his new collection, “Bootleg Redux Grunge.” The lawsuit claims that the new Marc Jacobs T-shirt for the group rips off their famous happy face logo that uses X’s for eyes. On the Marc Jacobs’ T-shirt we see a smiley face the letters “M and J for eyes, and then above the smiley face, the word “Heaven.” The type-face is also similar to the one Nirvana used. Marc Jacobs’ responded that Nirvana’s design was their inspiration but was “reinterpreted.”
Marc Jacbos’ also tried to get the lawsuit dismissed, but a judge revoked their motion, saying that the bottom-line is the two designs are too similar, and there is a high-probability for confusion. Nirvana’s lawsuit states that the fashion line is guilty “of copyright and trademark infringement, false designation of origin, and unfair competition. The band also alleged that Marc Jacobs used the happy face logo to “mislead the public into falsely believing that Nirvana endorses the entire ‘Bootleg Redux Grunge’ collection… when Nirvana has not done so.”
Kronstadt also wrote that “the issue presented as to the likelihood of confusion is not whether the marks are identical. It is whether they are sufficiently similar ‘in their entirety’ to make confusion likely… Whether a fact-finder may ultimately conclude that certain distinctions ‘render the marks dissimilar’ cannot be resolved through the motion.”
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