Toronto Maple Leafs Say Snoop Dogg Is Smoking Their Logo…

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Snoop Dogg faces a serious trademark infringement lawsuit…

Illustrious rapper and entrepreneur Snoop Dog — aka Cordozar Calvin Broadus Jr. — is now embroiled in a trademark battle with one of the Toronto Maple Leafs hockey team.

The Maple Leafs believe that the rapper’s logo for his marijuana product line bears a striking resemblance to the hockey team’s logo.  Maple Leafs Sports & Entertainment owns the Maple Leafs hockey team, and have asked the courts if they can have more time to deliberate on whether or not they will file an official lawsuit against the rapper.

Last year in November, Snoop Dog filed a trademark application for the ‘Leafs by Snoop’ logo in the United States Patent and Trademark Office.  But according to reports, the hockey league’s legal counsel is investigating whether this filing is valid.

Below are both logos…

Leaf Comparisons
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There are evident similarities in the logos, in the sense that both have three lines of white writing centered in the middle of a leaf.  There’s also the obvious ‘Leafs’ reference, written on top of giant image of a leaf.  Beyond that, there significant differences in style, color and appearance, and you can easily tell them apart.

It is unknown at this stage whether Snoop will get dragged into court, but Maple Leafs lawyers have requested a 90-day extension from the Virginia-based trademark office to look into the matter further.


(Image by Daniele Dalledonne, Creative Commons, Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic, cc by-sa 2.0)

4 Responses

  1. Anonymous

    “Toronto’s Maple Leafs believe that the rapper’s logo for his marijuana product line bears a striking resemblance to the hockey team’s logo”

    Wow! This is almost the very definition of ‘generic’.

    Even more ridiculous than the Zeppelin trial.

  2. Anonymous

    “there are evident similarities in the logo’s, in the sense that both have three lines of white writing centred in the middle of a leaf”

    Also, both are written in English and can be viewed on computer screens.

    Coincidence? I think not.

  3. Lest it be overlooked...

    If I were Snoop Dogg (Snoop Lion), I would read note 5 of Mazer v. Stein, 347 U.S. 201 (1954), very carefully. With emphasis on the fact that the constitutional issue was not properly raised before the court, yet, interestingly, the parties did not question the jurisdiction of the court (was there even a genuine controversy), the issue was merely given lip-service (suggested) by both parties during oral argument.

    Particularly, the reference to the Trade-Mark Cases, 100 U.S. 82 (1879):

    Trade-Mark Cases, 100 U.S. 82, 94. Congress had passed a trade-mark act under the Patent and Copyright Clause. A unanimous court held this effort [pursuant to the Commerce Clause, Article 1, Section 8, Clause 3] to protect trade-marks was unconstitutional: “The ordinary trade-mark has no necessary relation to invention or discovery. . . . If we should endeavour to classify it under the heads of writings of authors, the objections are equally strong. In this, as in regard to inventions, originality is required. And while the word writings may be liberally construed, as it has been, to include original designs for engravings, prints, & c., it is only such as are original, and are founded on the creative powers of the mind. The writings which are to be protected are the fruits of intellectual labour, embodied in the form of books, prints, engravings, and the like.” The trade-mark does not “depend upon novelty, invention, discovery, or any work of the brain. It requires no fancy or imagination, no genius, no laborious thought. It is simply founded on priority of appropriation.

    “the fruits of intellectual labor” are italicized in original.

    Then it goes on to direct attention to the Lanham Trade-Mark Act, yaddy yadda.

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