Legal English Glossary
“Lil Nas X Devil Shoes: Trademark Dispute between Nike with MSCHF”
Montero Lamar Hill (also known as Lil Nas X) is a young 22-year-old multi-talented American rapper, singer, songwriter, and internet personality. Recently, he collaborated with a company called MSCHF to make 666 pairs of the "Devil Shoes." MSCHF injected a drop of its employees into the soles of the 666 pairs of red and black Nike Airmax trainers. Several media outlets reported that the shoes sold out in less than a minute for $1,018 per pair.
Nike filed a lawsuit against MSCHF in April 2021 to the New York Court, alleging trademark infringement and dilution over the Satan Shoes. On behalf of its claims, Nike alleged that "since the announcement of the Satan Shoes, Nike has suffered significant harm to its bonafide, including consumers who believe that Nike is endorsing Satanism." Nike also mentioned online customer criticism calling to debar Nike or otherwise disparaging the brand, allegedly based on the erroneous assumption that Nike authorized the Satan Shoes. In defense, MSCHF claimed that they were "individually-numbered works of art" that "push the boundaries of today's culture through story-telling and performance art," and therefore relied on the First Amendment, stating that the freedom of expression protects the Satan Shoes. MSCHF also relied on the reasonably limited first-sale doctrine, which permits the resale of branded goods.
Nike's trademark and unfair competition indictment were ultimately successful and issued a temporary restraining order against MSCHF. MSCHF was outlawed from selling any more Satan Shoes, even though all but one of the 666 pairs had been sold.
Nike and MSCHF signed a settlement deal shortly after that. MSCHF decided to buy back any previously sold Satan Shoes for the original retail price, to repeal them from circulation since it had "already accomplished its creative intent," according to the agreement. MSCHF also agreed to buy back its previous Nike Air Max 97-based "Jesus Shoes," modified similarly.
For Example, “The judge issued a restraining order because she kept harassing the victim.”
Settlement: an act of bestowing or giving possession under legal sanction
Retrieved from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/settlement
For Example, “We were waiting for a settlement between both parties.”
Trademark Infringement: an appropriation or imitation that is likely to deceive ordinary or unwary buyers into accepting the goods of one trader as those of another
Retrieved from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/trademark%20infringement
For Example, “The owner, “of the trademark is going to pursue a legal action against trademark infringement.”
Disparaging: meant to belittle the value or importance of someone or something
For Example, “He likes to disparaging others.
Bonafide: made in good faith (legal or real).
Retrieved from https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/bona-fide
For example, “Only bonafide members of the company are allowed to use the logo”
“Although the album didn't get into Top 100 Billboard, she still a bonafide artist.”
Indictment: to charge with a crime by the finding or presentment of a jury (such as a grand jury) in due form of law
Retrieved from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/indicted
For example, “The charges on the indictment include attempted murder.”
Erroneous: based on false information, therefore wrong or false
Retrieved from https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/erroneous
For example, “Parents sometimes make erroneous assumptions.”
Outlawed: to place under a ban or restriction
Retrieved from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/outlaw
For example, “Indonesia outlawed abortion.”
Debar: to stop someone from doing something by law or official agreement
Retrieved from https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/debar
For example, “He was debarred from the library for screaming.”
Retrieved from https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/repeal
For example, “The government repealed the law.”