Accident or Trademark Infringement – The Folklore and Taylor Swift’s Folklore Album

By: Paris Henderson

Late last month the owner of The Folklore a Black-owned brand, Amira Rasool took to social media to call out Taylor Swift and her team for clearly copy and pasting her logo onto Swift’s merchandise to go with her new album.

According to their website, The Folklore is an online concept store and wholesale showroom highlighting designers “from Africa and the diaspora’s top luxury and emerging fashion brand.” Ms. Rasool protected her brand by filing for a trademark of her company name back in 2018 and it was registered in 2019. Some Black-owned brands skip this step but it is important to protect your business from accidental theft as this seems to be.

When Ms. Rasool called Swift out, Swift responded by letting her know it was not her intention to appropriate her logo and that she would promptly correct the issue. Ms. Rasool’s lawyers have been in contact with Swift’s lawyers and the “Folklore Album” merchandise featuring The Folklore online retailer’s logo can no longer be seen on Swift’s website. Items with the albums actual name “Folklore Album” are now in its place.

Two things are fortunate in this scenario that is likely more common than you would think, (1) Ms. Rasool protected her brand by seeking to trademark her logo, and (2) Taylor Swift’s team acted quickly to mitigate the situation. The Folklore has however been receiving a bombardment of spam and name-calling to their business social media pages from fans of Swift but, Swift has since come out to publicly vow a contribution to Ms. Rasool online retail store and to the Black in Fashion Council to help further rectify the situation.

Please, please, please protect what you have worked so hard to create or what you are currently birthing into fruition. Funderburg Law, LLC can pursue trademark filings on your behalf or you can take the DIY online course to trademark your mark yourself.

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