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Idol v. Idol • Brooklyn Paper

Idol v. Idol

American idle: Lawyers for Ryan Secrest vehicle “American Idol” apparently have enough spare time to send cease-and-desist letters to the organizers of local charity talent shows such as Bay Ridge’s own Brooklyn Senior Idol.
Associated Press / Carlos Osorio

The fact that lawyers for the dwindling Fox franchise “American Idol” threatened legal action if Bay Ridge’s Senior Idol singing contest did not immediately cease and desist using that name raises the question of their grounds for a charge of trademark infringement.

According to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, trademark infringement is the unauthorized use of a trademark “in a manner that is likely to cause confusion, deception, or mistake” in the mind of a reasonable person between the offerings of the trademark holder and the infringing party.

Unfortunately the lawyers did not return calls for comment regarding their presumably earnest fears that a local charity talent show for senior citizens would be mistaken for a nationally televised gladiatorial combat for teeny-bopper singers and fallback job for aging pop stars.

So we put together a slide show to see if our readers’ reasonable minds would be confused or deceived about the difference between the two. Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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