Taylor Swift Being Sued Over Trademark Infringement
On Tuesday, May 20, Blue Sphere, Inc., which owns the clothing line Lucky 13, filed a lawsuit against pop superstar Taylor Swift, claiming trademark infringement.
It is no secret that Taylor’s favorite number is her lucky number 13. “I was born on the 13th. I turned 13 on Friday the 13th. My first album went gold in 13 weeks. My first #1 song had a 13-second intro,” she explained to MTV News in 2009. “Every time I’ve won an award I’ve been seated in either the 13th seat, the 13th row, the 13th section or row M, which is the 13th letter.”
She explained that she even paints the number 13 on her hand before performing for good luck. “The significance of the number 13 on my hand … I paint this on my hand before every show because 13 is my lucky number — for a lot of reasons,” she explained. “It’s really weird.”
However, Taylor’s “lucky number” may not be so lucky anymore. Blue Sphere, Inc., which was formed in 1991, says that they had been using the phrase “Lucky 13” for their merchandise for over two decades before Taylor made her line of merchandise with the same phrase in 2012 without requesting their permission.
“While Swift’s merchandising and licensing team obsessively focuses on the Swift brand, it ignores the intellectual property rights of others,” the lawsuit reads.
“Swift’s conduct has been and will continue to be malicious, fraudulent, deliberate, willfull, intentional, and in disregard of Plaintiffs’ intellectual property rights,” the 28-page suit continues. “There can be no doubt that Swift — who has an extensive trademark portfolio and numerous business and licensing partners, and whose record label is even named the ‘Big Machine’ — knows, understands and substantially profits from her carefully cultivated and meticulously managed trademarks and brand, image, and other intellectual property.”
The lawsuit, which was filed at the US District Court in Orange County, California, is seeking profits from Taylor’s merchandise sales, along with punitive damages, recovery of lost profits and legal fees.
Image via Wikimedia Commons