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Band Involved in Legal Struggle After Name Trademarked Without Their Permission

Because of a trademark registration the original Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band were no longer able to record an album or perform a concert under their own name. They have now won back their name.

Published: 11 November 2019 | 12:00 AM Updated: 28 April 2021 | 4:30 PM
A red curtain closed across a stage.
Curtain closed for bands affected by the trademark loophole. Photo credit: Shutterstock

The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band won back their name because the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) ruled that only the remaining members of the band were entitled to own the the goodwill and therefore the name associated with that goodwill.

However, persisting claims means that the bands legal costs are still adding up.

The band challenged the decision to grant the trademark, and are hoping that their case can be used to close the current legal loophole in the UK’s Trademark Laws so that future artists will not face the same issues.

On top of this, the band are facing a lawsuit by the trademark owner, asserting that the bands attempt to win back their name amounts to a fraudulent conspiracy.

The MU encourages all bands to trademark their names from the outset, see our page on creating an identity for further advice.

A number of MPs have backed the band’s call to change the law, so that trademark applicants have to provide clear evidence of ownership when they register the name of a band.

The band, who have been unable to work for the past two years, are currently crowdfunding to cover the costs involved in dealing with this issue.

Please visit the Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band’s Crowd Justice page for more information on the band’s campaign, and to make a pledge towards the money needed to cover their legal costs.

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