‘Glee’ and trademark infringement

The well-known US TV series Glee has been on the wrong end of a High Court trademark infringement action. The claim was brought by Comic Enterprises, which operates live entertainment venues at different locations in the UK and has done since 1994. The venues are primarily used for stand-up comedy and live music. It has a UK-registered trademark for ‘the glee club’ in respect of a number of services, including entertainment services, comedy services, the provision of live and recorded music and the production and presentation of live shows. The mark was a series of two figurative marks containing the words ‘the glee club’ in a spotlight. The first in the series was in colour, the second in black and white; apart from that, there were no differences between them.

When Comic Enterprises claimed against Twentieth Century Fox for trademark infringement and passing off, Fox counterclaimed that the trademark was invalid and its specification too broad…

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