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Tensions between Kanye West and Walmart are heating up with the “Love Lockdown” singer blasting the retailer in yet another legal filing.
Less than a week after West sued Walmart for selling knockoff sneakers, his fashion label Yeezy has filed paperwork seeking to dismiss a separate trademark dispute the retailer has against it.
The Bentonville, Ark. retailer in April filed an objection with the US Patent and Trademark Office over Yeezy’s new logo — described in patent paperwork as “rays from a sun” — claiming that it’s too similar to Walmart’s and will therefore cause confusion.
But in paperwork filed on Tuesday, Yeezy asks that Walmart’s objection be dismissed, saying the retailer “certainly knows, as does the consuming public, that the last thing [Yeezy] wants is to do is associate itself with [Walmart].”
The idea that the “internationally famous” rapper, entrepreneur and former US presidential candidate would seek “to mislead consumers into mistakenly believing that the parties are associated … is, simply put, absurd,” Yeezy said.
Yeezy filed its trademark application in January 2020, saying that it plans to use the new logo on everything from sneakers, underwear, T-shirts, furniture, modular homes and even hotel services.
But the process was stalled in April after Walmart complained that the new logo — comprised of eight dotted lines emanating from a circle — is too similar to its sun logo comprised of six solid lines around a circle. Unless blocked, it will cause consumer “confusion and deception” and “dilute” Walmart’s brand, the retailer said.
The apparent feud escalated last week when Yeezy and the billionaire rapper sued Walmart for selling fake versions of its bizarre-looking new sneakers called Foam Runners, which quickly sold out despite drawing unflattering comparisons to Crocs.
Foam Runners sold for $75 when they were introduced last year and now sell for upwards of three times that on the secondary market, according to the suit. The knockoffs on Walmart’s site were retailing for between $21.99 and $33.99 a pair.
The complaint accuses Walmart of trying to ride on Yeezy’s coattails by offering subpar quality fakes that might make consumers falsely believe that Walmart and Yeezy have a partnership.
Walmart has said that the fakes were sold on its third-party marketplace by independent sellers and not by Walmart, adding that it “takes allegations like this seriously.” The retailer has since removed the listings for “Yeezy Inspired Slides,” among other products that were blatantly riffing on the rapper’s designs.
Walmart did not immediately respond for comment on Yeezy’s request to have its complaint tossed.
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