Kevin Spacey Threatens Musician For Offering Album Called 'Kevinspacey'

from the new-name-is-better-anyway dept

Apparently Kevin Spacey had his lawyers send musician Jason Drake (Cassettes Won't Listen) a cease & desist letter for putting out an album called "Kevinspacey." Apparently, his lawyers say that since Spacey's name is trademarked for use in both music and film, this was trademark infringement. I have to admit, I like how Drake responded. He's retitled the album as "Evinspacey." That may be worth buying just for the name change...


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  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 17th, 2011 @ 7:35am

    That really conflicts with my new album, "Kevinspace".

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 17th, 2011 @ 7:39am

    The follow-up album is tentatively entitled "Evenspacier".

     

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  3.  
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    Spaceboy (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 7:46am

    Re:

    You are infringing on my trademark! My album is called Kevinspaceboy. Prepare for legal bombardement.

     

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  4.  
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    The eejit (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 7:46am

    Re:

    This should be a trilogy of concept albums:

    Evinspacey, Kevinspacier and Ekevinspaciest.

     

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  5.  
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    Vincent Clement (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 7:58am

    Mr. Spacey, Jason Drake thanks you for the free publicity.

     

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  6.  
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    el_segfaulto (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 8:06am

    Re: Re:

    What about my book? Zero Degrees Kevin. It's gonna be a best seller!

     

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  7.  
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    Julian Sanchez, May 17th, 2011 @ 8:09am

    Hmm

    Gotta say, after looking at the album art, I'm inclined to side with Spacey on this one... It does actually look apt to confuse buyers. ("Oh look, Kevin Spacey made an album! I think it's called Cassettes Won't Listen?") http://www.cassetteswontlisten.com/preorder/pics/EVINSPACEY.jpg

     

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  8.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 17th, 2011 @ 8:10am

    Does this mean anyone who happens to have the same name will be barred from being a musician or actor because that 'spot' was taken.

     

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  9.  
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    Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased) (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 8:20am

    I don't see the problem. There is a big difference between Kevin Spacey and Kevins Pacey... or Kev in space y? Omitting the space (no not Keviny) between his name and surname along with not capitalizing the S makes it a completely different word...or name for that matter.

     

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  10.  
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    Huph, May 17th, 2011 @ 8:30am

    Re:

    No, not if it's your real name. This has come up many, many times. If your given name is Kevin Spacey, then you can use it, but you can't assume the name Kevin Spacey.

    Although, I have no idea what the rule of law would be if you first legally changed your name to Kevin Spacey.

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 17th, 2011 @ 8:31am

    Ragging on Kevin Spacey for demanding that a band/guy not sell albums with "Kevinspacey" emblazoned on the cover (with a picture that bears some likelness to the actor) is ridiculous, folks. This is one of those cases where trademark law is doing what it's supposed to do -- protecting customers from confusion about the soruce of something. Look at the cover of the album, and tell me whether you think the average person might be confused about whether it's an album made by the actor Kevin Spacey. (Hint: yes.) It doesn't mean Cassettes Won't Listen is a bad band/guy (they/he are actually quite good), or that CWL needs to be punished or anything. It's just that it's perfectly reasonable for Kevin Spacey to object to the use of his name by someone else, in a confusing manner, to sell that other person's products. Save your umbrage for cases where trademark is being misused.

     

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  12.  
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    Call me Al, May 17th, 2011 @ 8:36am

    Re:

    "Does this mean anyone who happens to have the same name will be barred from being a musician or actor because that 'spot' was taken."

    That happens all the time. There are many actors who use a screen name because their actual name is already in use by another actor. For example David Tennant (per wikipedia) "adopted the professional name "Tennant" – inspired by Neil Tennant of the Pet Shop Boys, after reading a copy of Smash Hits magazine[11] – because there was another David McDonald already on the books of the Equity union."

     

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  13.  
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    Pickle Monger (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 8:36am

    Name change

    How about "Evilspacey"?

     

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  14.  
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    Greg G (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 8:38am

    Re:

    No, you can be an actor, but thanks to the SAG, no actor/actress can have the same screen name. At least if you register with the union (SAG), you can't have the same name because you could not be distinguished from the other actor with the same name without descriptions or pictures every time, which would be a pain in the ass.

    As for musicians, I don't think the same thing applies.

     

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  15.  
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    ofb2632 (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 8:38am

    a better idea

    They should have called it 'Evinspacey, you can add the K because if we do, we will get sued.'

     

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  16.  
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    John, May 17th, 2011 @ 8:43am

    This how good.

    There would have been someone out there that would have thought Kevin Spacey was involved with the album and purchased it. That is why we have trademarks. This shows no originality in naming their album and probably just wanted the free publicity. I would have never heard of the album if they had named it "Our Album".

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 17th, 2011 @ 8:44am

    Would yecapsnivek be okay?

     

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  18.  
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    Not an Electronic Rodent (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 8:49am

    Re:

    I'd kind of agree with you except to say "where's the magic line?" It's not like it's an uncommon phenomenon to put someone famous on an album cover... I doubt Warner music asked Charles Hawtrey for example (since he was dead at the time).

     

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  19.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 9:01am

    Re:

    David Jones had to change his stagename to David Bowie, because Davy Jones of the Monkees had already made the name famous. I think it was a good change.

     

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  20.  
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    Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased) (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 9:02am

    Re:

    Look at the cover of the album, and tell me whether you think the average person might be confused about whether it's an album made by the actor Kevin Spacey. (Hint: yes.)

    If the word Kevinspacey wasn't on the cover I would never have guessed that it is him...if it even is. All you can see is hair, glasses, and a shirt collar...could be anybody.

     

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  21.  
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    Raphael (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 9:14am

    Re: Re: Re:

    That's pretty space-y

     

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  22.  
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    chuck, May 17th, 2011 @ 9:34am

    Kevin_______y

    "There would have been someone out there that would have thought Kevin Spacey was involved with the album and purchased it. That is why we have trademarks. "

    Boy, the Beatles are in big trouble for Sergeant Peppers then...

     

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  23.  
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    grav (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 10:40am

    Re: Re:

    I agree here. You've got two artists - Kevin Spacey and CWL, who are both pushing it a little too far, I think. It's tough to draw a line for this, but it's even tougher to leave things subjective. On the one hand, Kevin Spacey could just as easily have said "screw it, it's just a name let him use it" or "call the album whatever you want, just put something on the inside jacket that I had nothing to do with it" (personally I think having the phrase "Kevin Spacey is in no way affiliated with this album" would have been funny/cool if all this legal nonsense had never been brought up as a point). On the other hand you have an artist who very clearly designed album art implying that the album artist is Kevin Spacey - sort of a "push-the-envelope" move to begin with. (As for the picture looking like Kevin Spacey, sorry but that picture could be anyone - there's no definable marks or traits anywhere on it)

     

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  24.  
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    Stu (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 10:52am

    He better hope that Ryan Adams hasn't patented dropping the first letter of an existing artist's name or he'll be in even more trouble!

     

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  25.  
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    RobShaver (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 11:18am

    It's a publicity stunt ...

    and it worked. We're talking about it aren't we? They wanted that C&D for the publicity.

     

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  26.  
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    Richard (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 11:39am

    Re:

    But song - and by extension album - titles are specifically exempted from the rules - that is why there are many songs called "The Power of Love"

    Kevin Spacey is importing a rule from a domain (acting) where it applies - to one (music titles) where it doesn't.

     

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  27.  
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    David Liu (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 11:39am

    Re: Re:

    But that's the point. As an average music listener, I would've never thought that CWL in the glasses was the artist name. But I do know the name "Kevin Spacey", and if I see that along the side of the album, I'll immediately associate the CD with his name.

     

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  28.  
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    Nick Burns (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 11:46am

    Should've renamed it: Kev, in space, see?

     

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  29.  
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    Difster, May 17th, 2011 @ 1:33pm

    Kay Vin Spacey

    It would have been even better if he changed it to notkevinspacey.

     

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  30.  
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    non-breaking space, May 17th, 2011 @ 5:47pm

    Re: Name change

    I think I'd go with the html version: KEVIN[ ]E

     

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  31.  
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    Lawrence D’Oliveiro, May 17th, 2011 @ 6:12pm

    But I Thought ...

    ... you can’t trademark your own name.

     

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  32.  
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    techflaws.org (profile), May 17th, 2011 @ 10:36pm

    Re: Re:

    No, not if it's your real name.

    Unless of course your name is "Shell" and some oil company decides it wants your .de domain.

    http://archiv.jura.uni-saarland.de/lawweb/pressreleases/shelldomainname.html

     

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  33.  
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    Not an Electronic Rodent (profile), May 18th, 2011 @ 9:22am

    Re:

    Should've renamed it: Kev, in space, see?

    Only permitted if you affect a Welsh accent while saying it.

     

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  34.  
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    netjeff, May 18th, 2011 @ 2:08pm

    Kevin's spacey

    Drake could also have renamed it kevinsspacey

     

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