In the midst of boy band resurgence, last week One Direction found themselves embattled in a $1 million lawsuit over their name. It turns out a California band shares the same name.
Simon Cowell’s record label Syco Entertainment and Sony Music are currently being sued for trademark infringement. The California band filed papers that claim Syco and Sony Music knew about the duplicate name, but decided to use it anyway.
The Hollywood Reporter writes that as proof, “the plaintiffs point to a recent segment on NBC’s Today, where the British teen-scream group was shown, accompanied accidentally by music from the U.S. band. So now One Direction (U.K.) is being threatened with losing its name.”
The U.S. band’s attorney, Peter Ross said Cowell’s company knew this long before One Direction hit it big in the States.
“Rather than change their name or do anything to create confusion or avoid damage to our goodwill, they chose to press ahead and come on their tour,” Ross said.
Despite the charges, the U.K. band is unfazed.
“We’re not changing our name,” Zayn Malik told an Australian interviewer. “We don’t know what’s going to happen but we’re not changing our name.”
Though Malik assures all One Direction is here to stay, fans are taking things in their own hands with a Change.org petition.
“This is important because OUR boy band is way more famous in the music industry! They have sold out concerts, they have already sold their merchandise to fans worldwide, they have had an album out,” the petition says. “They have been around for 2 years and are more famous than the U.S. One Direction. U.S. One Direction should change there name not the U.K. One Direction!”
– Annie Reuter CBS Local