You may notice that the above photo shows Jane’s Addiction guitarist/alt-rock gadabout Dave Navarro “rocking” a guitar strap emblazoned with the logo of conspicuous-consumer fave Louis Vuitton, a bit of infringey homage that Navarro has engaged in for the past eight years because, as he writes on his Web site, “I have enjoyed the LV brand for years and years. I own many items such as luggage, belts, wallets, boots and clothing that bear the LV name. Hell, my gym bag is even a LV bag. So they make great stuff. No Doubt.” Well, if this note Navarro received from the company’s law firm yesterday is any indication, they think they make great stuff as well, and they get a little hinky when not-as-great stuff uses their logo without permission:
It appears that after eight years of touring and playing shows with my faux LV guitar straps (which were a gift), Louis Vuitton have decided that they have a problem with it and have made it clear that they will sue me if I continue to use them. I was shocked by the tone in their letter. So heavy and serious!!!! Lighten up guys! My favorite line in the letter is this: “We have no doubt that this copying has been willful and is intended to trade upon the fame and cachet of the LV Trademarks to elevate the status of the infringing Guitar Strap, and of Jane’s Addiction.” Sure I have enjoyed the LV brand for years and years. I own many items such as luggage, belts, wallets, boots and clothing that bear the LV name. Hell, my gym bag is even a LV bag. So they make great stuff. No Doubt. Is it great enough to elevate the status of Jane’s Addiction? I mean, are they fucking kidding me? Has anybody EVER purchased a concert ticket or an album based on what is hanging around the guitar player’s neck? Ever? “Hey! So and so is playing tonight. Wanna go?” “Nah, I hate those guys.” “Yeah, but have you seen the guitar straps they use? Pretty spectacular!” “Really? Why, yes. In that case I would love to attend and pay my hard earned wages in exchange for a rock and roll musical review down at the theater this evening.”
OK. I am getting carried away! I guess if they just called me up and said, “Hey, could you not use those straps anymore for the following reasons… etc.?” it wouldn’t be such a ridiculous deal but the whole “Exhibit A” thing combined with their legal tone was just ludicrous enough to make me post the document here! Tom Ford… Any interest in making guitar straps?
As Britney Spears can tell Dave, LV is very serious about keeping its logo on things that have a modicum of taste. But nice try at wrangling some free replacements that are just as classy! (And really, dude, isn’t wearing a Louis Vuitton guitar strap while playing with the Panic Channel “elevating” that particular brand, since you’re basically trying to fool people into thinking that the project made any money at all? I mean, I have fond memories of Steve Isaacs, too, but really now.)
This Is Amazing! [6767.com]