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“Come As You Are” To Court

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Grunge band, Nirvana has filed a lawsuit against Marc Jacobs for creating a shirt design very similar to their band’s logo. The clothing brand tried to dismiss it. 

Marc Jacobs’ shirt design is similar to Nirvana’s smiley, with the eyes Xs replaced by “M” and “J.” Above the smiley, is the word “HEAVEN” in the same font as “NIRVANA.”

Remaining band members of Nirvana have come forth saying that they have the rights to their design. They claim that their deceased lead singer, Kurt Cobain, claimed rights to the design. According to the final lawsuit, their logo was licensed in 1992. 

Jacobs argued back saying that their copyright registration is invalid, in a motion to dismiss. In his own defense, Jacob stated the shirt’s design was “reinterpreted” thus making the shirt unique enough.

Recently, Judge John Kronstadt, says the band’s original complaint was enough to continue moving forward in the case. The various technicalities such as inaccurate date of publication and what merchandise they had rights to, were not enough to justify the motion.

The judge has pointed out that the Marc Jacobs design contains distinctive elements as the Nirvana logo, and states it is dependent on how likely it is to get the two mixed up. 

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