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Walker Wear brand sued Off-White™ for plagiarism

To end up under accusation is the WW Varsity Jacket of the brand of Virgil Abloh

Walker Wear brand sued Off-White™ for plagiarism To end up under accusation is the WW Varsity Jacket of the brand of Virgil Abloh

Walker Wear, a streetwear brand founded in Brooklyn in 1990 and famous for collaborating with Tupac and The Notorius B.I.G., has sued Off-White™ for copyright infringement and brand dilution about a varsity jacket of over two thousand dollars that has embroidered on the chest two gray "W" on a black background that,  according to Walker Wear, it looks excessively like its own logo, particularly widespread on a hoodie line. According to reports from The Fashion Law, the brand would have already sent warning letters to Off-White™ which would, in any case, continue to sell the varsity. Walker Wear claims to have «invested substantial time, effort, and resources in developing the [WW XXL Athletic] trademark and trade dress rights,», and that, consequently, its logos are «associated with Walker Wear and acquired substantial recognition, goodwill, and fame». The hoodie had become famous, in fact, when it was worn by Mike Tyson in the 90s. Specifically, the founder of the brand April Walker recorded last March the «stylized letters WW and the stylized letters XXL and the wording ATHLETIC WALKER WEAR in upper case letters» at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office – a style that had been introduced as early as '93.

April Walker's accusation then extended to Abloh's work in general and to her now famous 3% rule and to the entire fashion industry that «misappropriating the work of independent designers like [Ms. Walker] on the assumption that she and others like her will be unable to meaningfully challenge them in legal proceedings», arguing that the sale of the varsity jacket constitutes an infringement of its intellectual property, adding that «given Ms. Walker’s iconic status in the streetwear fashion industry and Mr. Abloh’s knowledge of the industry, Off-White was almost certainly aware of the mark prior to designing, producing, and selling the infringing jacket» pointing out that the WW logo could have no meaning for Off-White™. For this reason the brand's accusations are Walker's trademark infringement and dilution, unfair competition and enrichment without just cause and also adds misleading advertising. The brand also requested an injunction preventing the sale of the varsity during the duration of the lawsuit.

Also according to The Fashion Law, Off-White™ would have retorted by stating that the Walker Wear logo «appears to be more historical in nature», thus suggesting that the branding under accusation would have been used in a non-continuous manner and that the market is already full of other uses of the lettering "WW". Another potential argument that Virgil Abloh's brand could use in its defense could concern the decorative of the two letters in conjunction with the presence of other Off-White™ registered trademarks which would distinguish the two products also considering the different positioning and style of the two letters on the chest – it should be noted that in the same text of the accusation Walker Wear describes the letters of his logo as "slightly overlapping" while in the varsity jacket the two W  they would be separate.