IP Matters — winter 2014: battle of the bands

By Jenifer Casey and Chandni Rani

In the latter half of 2013, two interesting trademark decisions were handed down by, respectively, the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court (IPEC) (formerly the Patents County Court) in the case of Andrew Powell v Martin Robert Turner and the UK Intellectual Property Office (IPO) in the matter of an opposition against a trademark application by John Steel.

Both cases concerned the names of British musical groups; the former the rock band Wishbone Ash, which first found fame in the 1970s, and the latter The Animals, the 1960s blues rock band that formed part of the ‘British Invasion’ of the US.

The Wishbone Ash dispute concerned two members of the original 1969 line-up. One of the band’s most well-known and successful albums was Argus, released in 1972, which reached number three in the UK Albums Chart…

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