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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Comments on “Kevin Spacey Threatens Musician For Offering Album Called 'Kevinspacey'”

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Call me Al says:

Re: 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.”

Greg G (profile) says:

Re: 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.

Anonymous Coward says:

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.

grav (profile) says:

Re: 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)

Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased) (profile) says:

Re: 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.

John says:

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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