The IPKat learns from the Washington Post that motorcycle stuntman Evel Knievel is suing musician Kayne West for trade mark infringement. West’s Touch the Sky music video features West as a stuntman called "Evel Kanyevel," dressed in a jumpsuit similar to that which Knievel is famous for wearing. The Kanyevel character is intimate with Pamela Anderson and recreates a stunt similar to one performed by Knievel in the 70s. In his lawsuit, Knievel, who has trade mark rights over both his name and his image argues that the video is

"directly counter to Evel Knievel's long-established public persona, utterly inconsistent with his toy products and appeal to children, and harms the reputation of the Evel Knievel trademark and the Evel Knievel costume."

The IPKat wonders whether (depending on the timing of the video) this will be a test for the US’s new trade mark dilution act. If it is, he notes that there is a defence for fair use activities identifying and parodying, criticising or commenting upon the famous mark owner or the goods or services of the famous mark owner.
KAYNE HE DO IT? KAYNE HE DO IT? Reviewed by Anonymous on Wednesday, December 13, 2006 Rating: 5


  1. It's KANYE West, not Kayne. He sings popular music I believe.

  2. The IPKat thanks you for this correction. He will endeavour to purchase on of Mr West's exquisite ditties to play on his gramophone.

  3. I would recommend "Late Registration". It's actually quite good.

  4. the video doesn't look like a parody. west doesn't seem to be making a statement about knievel so much as to use the "clever" similar sounding name as a "vehicle" for his song. further, it's commercial use, and you could probably throw consumer confusion in there too (ask how many people think west or his director needed knievel's permission before shooting this video, i bet you'll get a lot of positive replies). if west made so much money off this album, he should settle with knievel and give the old man some money for his medical treatment for ripping off his trademark.



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