French dance duo Justice has sent a cease-and-desist letter to Justin Bieber over his new album.
Bieber announced his new album on February 26th to throngs of adoring fans. But fans of Justice and the duo’s label, Ed Banger Records, weren’t happy. They noted several similarities to the branding of the Justice album and Justice’s logo. Justice’s co-manager, Tyler Goldberg, spoke with Rolling Stone about the announcement.
“The morning Bieber announced his album, it was pretty tough to miss,” Goldberg says. “Aside from seeing it all over the internet for ourselves, we heard it from hundreds of people throughout the day. Industry people, Justice fans – and the Justice guys received a ton of messages. Not only compelled to point out the similarities between the Justice Justin Bieber album but confused. ‘Is this a Justice collaboration?'”
Ed Banger Records casually joked about the similarity of the Justice branding on Instagram. But now it’s a legal matter. A letter dated March 10th from Justice’s legal counsel to Bieber’s lawyer is a cease-and-desist of the use of ‘Justice,’ and the ‘cross’ T. Justice trademarked the T in Justice appearing like a crucifix in France in 2008 and the European Union in 2014.
A snippet of the cease-and-desist letter calls Bieber’s use of the Mark illegal.
“You have not received permission from Justice to utilize the Mark,” the letter states. “Moreover, Bieber’s work is in no way affiliated with, supported by, or sponsored by Justice. Such use of the Mark is not only illegal but likely to deceive and confuse consumers. Through your illegal co-opting of the Mark, you are now subject to immediate legal action and damages including, but not limited to, punitive and injustice relief.”
Rolling Stone reports that the cease-and-desist letter also references a previous email between Bieber’s team and Justice’s management.
The Bieber team was trying to track down the designer who worked on the logo for Justice.
“We’re trying to track down the designer who did the below logo for Justice. Was hoping you could help point me in the right direction,” the email reads. After connecting with the designer, the Bieber team apparently stopped communicating with Justice management.
The cease-and-desist letter highlights that Bieber’s team sought out the same designer of the Justice logo. “They sought to use the same artist to essentially duplicate it for the album. This is textbook bad faith and willful infringement,” the letter continues. Despite the cease-and-desist letter, the Justice album release debuted today (March 19th).