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Adidas backs down from trademark dispute with Black Lives Matter

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Adidas backs down from trademark dispute with Black Lives Matter

German sportswear company Adidas has withdrawn its opposition against a trademark application filed by the advocacy group Black Lives Matter for a logo featuring three parallel stripes.

Two days after objecting to the trademark application, Adidas said that it would rescind its objection "as soon as possible". Adidas did not explain in its statement why it was withdrawing its opposition to the trademark application.

The company opposed the Black Lives Matter application because it showed a trademark that “incorporates three stripes in a manner that is confusingly similar” to the company’s familiar three-stripe logo “in appearance and overall commercial impression.”

In November 2020, the Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation submitted a trademark application for a yellow three-stripe logo.

The window for people and organizations to submit their opposition to the foundation's trademark application opened in September 2022.

Before presenting its notice of protest, Adidas reportedly tried to extend that window several times.

Adidas claimed that its three-stripe logo has been present on its footwear since at least 1952 and that it has been included in collaborations with elite sportsmen including Lionel Messi, James Harden, and Patrick Mahomes.

Adidas claimed that it had also collaborated with and sponsored superstars like Beyoncé, Selena Gomez, and Bad Bunny while using the three-stripe design.

In the filing, Adidas said that the public understood that the three-stripe mark “distinguishes and identifies Adidas’s merchandise.”

According to the case's documents, since 2008, Adidas has filed more than 90 lawsuits and reached more than 200 settlement agreements pertaining to its trademark.

PitchMark previously covered a story about Adidas being accused of copying its Adillette slides design from Kayne West’s Yeezy slides design that was launched in 2019.

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Mark Laudi

Mark Laudi

Press contact Managing Partner (+65) 6223 2249

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