Pop icon Beyonce recently earned a victory in her ongoing legal crusade to trademark her eldest daughter’s name, Blue Ivy Carter.
Beyonce and her husband, rapper Jay-Z, share 8-year-old Blue Ivy and 3-year-old twins Sir and Rumi Carter. Since Blue Ivy was born in 2012, Beyonce and her company, BGK Trademark Holdings, has been attempting to trademark Blue Ivy’s name to prevent opportunists from profiting off it, filing applications that cover everything from pacifiers to video game and more. “People wanted to make products based on our child’s name, and you don’t want anybody trying to benefit off your baby’s name,” said Jay-Z in a 2013 interview with Vanity Fair. “For somebody to say – ‘this person had a kid – I’m gonna make a f—–g stroller with that kid’s name,’ it’s, like, where’s the humanity?”
The opposition to Blue Ivy’s Carter’s name being trademarked came from a woman named Veronica Morales, whose event planning company, Blue Ivy Events, shares the name with Beyonce’s daughter (though Morales has run her business since before BIue Ivy Carter was born). In 2012, Morales received trademark registration from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for the name “Blue Ivy,” for her business. Morales filed an opposition notice with the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB), saying that Beyonce shouldn’t be allowed to trademark “Blue Ivy” because of possible confusion between her business and Beyonce’s daughter.
Beyonce fired back, saying that Morales’ argument was “frivolous,” since consumers are unlikely to confuse “a boutique wedding event planning business and Blue Ivy Carter, the daughter of two of the most famous performers in the world,” calling her award-winning daughter a “cultural icon.”
Veronica Morales then argued that Beyonce was violating trademark rules, claiming that Beyonce was seeking to trademark a name that she wasn’t intending to use for commercial purposes; even pointing to Jay-Z’s previously mentioned 2013 Vanity Fair interview as legal evidence.
In a July 6 statement, the TTAB sided with Beyonce, saying that the Jay-Z interview was “hearsay within hearsay;” since Jay-Z wasn’t a formal party to the legal action, his interview was inadmissible as legal evidence. The TTAB also sided with Beyonce’s argument that people wouldn’t confuse her daughter with Morales’ business, stating that Morales provided “no evidence suggesting they are related in a manner that would give rise to the mistaken belief that they emanate from the same source.”
With the TTAB striking down Veronica Morales’ opposition, Beyonce is free to continue her application to trademark Blue Ivy Carter’s name. Ironically, it doesn’t stop Morales from continuing to operate her business as Blue Ivy.