Right and Wrong on Instagram®

“I officially own the trademarks for PUSSYPOP® & BUSSYBOY®. Today is an excellent day,” said Azealia Banks on Instagram®.

RIGHT. Her application for PUSSYPOP faced a problem because “pussy” was considered “scandalous.” Her application eventually went on to registration after the ruling in Iancu v. Brunetti, which is the FUCT gift that keeps on giving to “scandalous” trademarks.

Unfortunately, Ms. Banks also posted some things that are WRONG. Ms. Banks insisted that Iggy Azalea stop using “Pussy Pop” as a song title “before things get ugly.” 

WRONG. Ms. Banks’s trademark registrations are for soap, tampons, lube and probiotic supplements. That doesn’t give her the right to stop someone from naming a song “Pussy Pop.”[1]

Ms. Banks points out that she “Definitely [has] proof of usage prior to [Iggy Azalea’s] song release . . ..”

WRONG. Ms. Banks just flat out doesn’t have the right to stop someone from using “Pussy Pop” as a song title. Who used it first doesn’t matter in this situation.

Ms. Banks says that she has “a slew of disparaging tweets from [Iggy Azalea] about [Ms. Banks’s] company.”

WRONG. Dissing a company isn’t necessarily trademark infringement.

Ms. Banks says people: “Can’t make a song called ‘Doritos’ if the CEO of Doritos does not approve of usage.”

WRONG: You can make a song named “Doritos” and no one can do anything about it. Also, there’s no CEO of Doritos. Frito-Lay North America, Inc. owns the DORITOS brand.

So many teachable moments in a couple of Instagram posts.
Super shout out to Cassandra G. for bringing this to my attention.
[1] Ms. Banks included a copy of a letter from her lawyer with her post. The letter wasn’t a cease and desist letter. It was just the letter her lawyer sent her with her Certificate of Registration. Ms. Banks redacted her lawyer’s mention of the registration number.
WRONG. The registration number isn’t a secret. Anyone can look it up online. Redacting the number is like taking a photo of your face tattoo and redacting the words in the tattoo.

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