Oh yes i.am, oh no i.am not! Will.i.am 'clarifies his position' in legal wrangle with Pharrell Williams over use of the phrase 'I Am'
A bizarre exchange of “Yes I am,” “No I am not” between two giants of the music industry has taken yet another turn after Will.i.am denied reports that he is suing fellow American musician Pharrell Williams over his use of the phrase “I am”.
A statement from his lawyers seeking to address the “misinformation circulating about Will.i.am and the ‘I.am’ mark” succeeded only to confirm that the star is embroiled in a legal dispute with Pharrell over his use of the phrase – although he’s not technically suing.
Will.i.am’s attorney Ken Hertz confirmed that his client was “in a run-of-the-mill trademark dispute” with Pharrell which has been going on since late last year.
Hertz said the Black Eyed Peas frontman “has done what any trademark owner must do to protect and maintain a trademark” by lodging an objection with the US Trademark Office to Pharrell’s “i am OTHER” brand.
Will.i.am, who is also a judge on The Voice UK, tweeted yesterday: “I am not suing @Pharrell & I NEVER WAS.”
His lawyer outlined the action Will.i.am is taking in regard to Pharrell’s “I am OTHER”: “We own a trademark. They [Pharrell] have applied for a trademark. We think their proposed trademark is too close to our registered and common law trademarks. They disagree.”
Pharrell seems to think he is being sued, too. Speaking Rolling Stone magazine he said: “I am disappointed that Will, a fellow artist, would file a case against me. I am someone who likes to talk things out and, in fact, I attempted to do just that on many occasions.”
”I am surprised in how this is being handled and I am confident that Will's trademark claims will ultimately be found to be as meritless and ridiculous as I do.”
Will.i.am claims to have used the “i.am” mark in connection with various businesses for around a decade. He is currently in the process of registering other “i.am” marks including “I am angel” and “i.am.STEAM”.
Pharrell set up his “i am OTHER” brand to promote talent online and said he was searching for a “diverse group of optimistic, bright minds”. Will.i.am also believes Pharrell’s logo is “confusingly similar” to his “i.am+” iPhone camera add-on, according to court documents.
Will.i.am has himself recently faced accusations of copyright infringement after producers Arty and Mat Zo accused him of sampling their song “Rebound” without their permission on his latest recording with singer Chris Brown.
Film review Michael Glatze biopic isn't about a self-hating gay man gone straight
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Katie Hopkins attacked me on Twitter — so I reported her to the police for inciting racial hatred
- 2 Replica Back to the Future Hoverboard released
- 3 Gamers confess the worst things they've done in The Sims
- 4 Dylan Moran on quitting smoking, being about as sexy as the Pope and why comedy panel programmes are 'c*ck shows'
- 5 Modern society encapsulated in five seconds
Poldark, review: Demelza’s insouciance is almost as impressive as Ross’ pecs
Fifty Shades of Grey movie shows first sex scene 'after 40 minutes'
Menstruation-themed photo series artist 'censored by Instagram' says images are to demystify taboos around periods
James May hints he will not continue on Top Gear without Jeremy Clarkson
Jeremy Clarkson Top Gear return: Suspended host set for live event in Norway next week
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
Street preacher quoting from the Bible fined for calling homosexuality an 'abomination'
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
Woman filmed launching racist tirade against men on the Tube for speaking in 'own lingo'
The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
David Cameron calls Labour 'hopeless, sneering socialists' while announcing 7-day NHS plans