Kylie Minogue is all loco-motion defending her first name in
court after a young reality TV personality in the United States
called Kylie Jenner tried to trademark the name Kylie.
Kylie Jenner filed in a US court to trademark the name
"Kylie" for marketing, advertising and entertainment
services. If Ms Jenner won a trademark on her first name it would
prevent others using the name Kylie in the same branding of
products such as cosmetics, clothing, entertainment and pop
You should be so lucky, cried Australia's singing budgie,
who launched legal action in the US Patent and Trademark Office
pointing out she has had the domain name kylie.com since 1996 – a year
before Kylie Jenner was born. Our Kylie launched her first album
'Kylie' in 1988 that sold 500,000 copies in the US. Since
then she has released 13 albums, performed countless concerts and
her name is known around the world.
In a great putdown, Our Kylie said Kylie Jenner was a
"secondary television personality" who appears in a
supporting role on the TV series 'Keeping up with the
Kardashians' with her older sisters.
Our Kylie already owns a trademark on the name "Kylie
Minogue" but insists having "Kylie" as a global
trademark would have people spinning around, unable to get Kylie
out of their heads.
Ms Minogue's legal team also protests that if Ms Jenner
trademarked the name Kylie it may harm the veteran singer's
reputation and image given that Ms Jenner, 18, is inclined to
Michael McHugh, a solicitor with Stacks Law Firm who has dealt
extensively with the country music industry, said it was generally
impossible to trademark a common name or a place such as a city or
beach as it would be infringed on a daily basis.
"It would be impossible for me to trademark the name
Michael or a place like Bondi Beach or a phrase like 'good
times' as they are in common usage," Mr McHugh said.
But a trademark can be a word, phrase, letter, number, sound,
scent, logo, shape, packaging or picture. It is used to distinguish
your goods and services from those of another business. You
can't call your business Qantas or McDonald's as it would
cause confusion with existing brands.
"If you have a business or you are a brand in yourself such
as an entertainer or sporting star, you may apply for a trademark
on goods and services to protect your brand to protect them from
similar businesses. It would be well worth getting legal advice if
you find yourself in this situation."
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The Ugg boots case revolves around who holds the trade mark rights to the word 'Ugg' in relation to sheepskin boots.
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