All posts under ‘Copyright’


Gucci wins legal battle against Guess to the tune of $4.7 million

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After three long years of battling it out in court, the verdict in the case of Guess vs. Gucci is in: Guess has to pay up $4.7 million to the Italian luxury brand, following a copyright infringement civil suit that Guess was slapped with in 2009.

As we mentioned last month, the fight between the two Gs was a particularly arduous and dramatic one, complete with a feisty judge, tear-jerking testimonials and bitter words on both sides. Though Gucci ended up being the victor in the case, the $4.7 million that they’ll be receiving is a fraction of the $221 million settlement they’d originally demanded.
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They said/We said: The battle of the Gs continues, with the courtroom case between Gucci and Guess taking an unexpectedly pro-Guess turn

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The battle of the Gs continues, with the courtroom case between Gucci and Guess taking an unexpectedly pro-Guess turn today.

As we reported last month, Gucci is suing Guess for $221 million in trademark infringement damages. The luxury brand claims that Guess has been featuring details commonly found in Gucci products (think tri-coloured stripes, a square “G” and the brand name printed in similar flowing script) resulting in over $200 million in loss.

Marc Fisher, CEO of Guess licensee Marc Fisher Footwear, explained (WWD reports it as weepily!) in defense: “the number of shoes Gucci claims infringed on its intellectual property rights represent just three percent of all shoes Marc Fisher Footwear made in a four-year period […].” Moreover, Bonnie Smith, a former shoe designer and current FIDM part-time instructor who was brought in on Guess’s behest, denied similarities between the two brands and confirmed that “yes, we ‘copy,’ we duplicate, we fool around with [original versions]. … It’s all because a retailer wants it. … [But] it’s really hard to make shoes identical, and I don’t think anyone really tries to do that.”

Things got ugly for Guess when Gucci’s lawyer revealed a document showing that Fisher has bought $75,000 in Gucci merch over the past six years. You’d think Fisher would have been tongue-tied over the evidence but instead he had no trouble admitting it because he claims the products were purchased to use as “inspiration,” but that they have photos of many other brands, which they use as “references” for their own designs.

Guess and co. regained their footing, however, when Darren Saunders, Marc Fisher Footwear’s attorney, showed Smith samples of a Vans shoe, an Adidas sneaker and a Sperry Top-Sider shoe —which all, as it turned out, were created by Gucci. Now who’s zooming who?

THEY SAID:

Fashionista: “[…] unfortunately the evidence does not stack up in Fisher’s favor.” [Fashionista]

Styleite: “Just when we thought Gucci‘s copyright infringement lawsuit against Guess was over, there’s a twist.” [Styleite]

WE SAID:

Caitlin Agnew, assistant editor/research: “There’s a fine line between inspiration and imitation.”


Fashion news: Lohan accused of ripping off designers, the Obamas are unwitting models and Karl shoots for V’s size issue

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The two disputed 6126 designs. Images via WWD

The two disputed 6126 designs. Images via WWD

Some of the items in Lindsay Lohan’s 6126 clothing line look rather familiar to a couple of designers. Black Milk Clothing’s James Lillis and designer Jen Kao both say Lohan copied their designs. The company disputes this, naturally. [WWD]

But wait! It is apparently LiLo who’s had her designs lifted. [Stylecaster]

A NY Times report surfaced yesterday that H&M in New York’s Herald Square had been mutilating and dumping unsold clothing. H&M responded, saying “We are committed 100 percent to make sure this practice is not happening anywhere else, as it is not our standard practice.” It’s worth noting that H&M is listed as a donor to Windfall, a Canadian new clothing bank. [NYTimes, Racked, Windfall] Read more »


Balenciaga sues Steve Madden over the “Lego” shoe

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The Steve Madden shoe (left) and the Balenciaga

After being sued by Alexander McQueen this fall for copyright infringement, Steve Madden is looking at another lawsuit, this time from Balenciaga. The house alleges that Madden copied the now famous Lego-inspired shoe from Balenciaga’s Fall 2007 collection. Madden’s pair sold for US$99.95 to the French brand’s US$4,175.

The news lead National Post columnist Nathalie Atkinson to point out on her Twitter feed that Balenciaga has had some looks in recent seasons that bear suspicious resemblance to the work of other designers. Read more »


Daily reads: Horse hairdos, the Anna effect and the end of bling

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Photo by Julian Wolkenstein

Before we get started, let us just say that The Outnet, Net-a-porter’s outlet site, launched today. We’ll just wait here till you get back from shopping….

Hermès nose Jean-Claude Ellena’s scented memories. [WSJ, via Now Smell This]

All the pretty horses with hair extensions. [Daily Mail, via Glamour]

Wanna open a store in a recession? Move to London. And get some customized M&Ms. Seems to be working for Rick Owens. [Hypebeast and Fashionista]

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