Welcome

Lil Nas X ‘Satan Shoes’ Spark Nike Suit Against Design Studio (1)

March 29, 2021, 8:26 PM; Updated: March 30, 2021, 12:46 PM

Nike Inc. is suing a Brooklyn design studio that allegedly collaborated with rap artist Lil Nas X for selling customized Nike Air Max 97 shoes altered to feature a satanic theme, according to a lawsuit filed Monday in the Eastern District of New York.

By selling the “Satan Shoes,” MSCHF Product Studio has created a “likelihood of injury to Nike’s business reputation and goodwill,” the trademark infringement lawsuit alleges.

MSCHF has also caused a “likelihood of consumer confusion, mistake, and deception as to the source of origin or relationship of Nike’s products and MSCHF’s Satan Shoes, and has otherwise competed unfairly by unlawfully trading on and using” Nike’s trademarks without permission, the company says.

The material alterations include referring to the shoe as “the Satan Shoe,” adding red ink and a drop of human blood to the midsole, adding red embroidered satanic themed detailing, adding a bronze pentagram to the laces, and adding a new sock liner, the complaint alleges.

Cause of Action: Trademark infringement in violation of 15 U.S.C. §1114; false designation of origin/unfair competition in violation of 15 U.S.C. §1125(a); trademark dilution in violation of 15 U.S.C. §1125(c); common law trademark infringement and unfair competition.

Relief: Declaratory and injunctive relief, damages, attorneys’ fees and costs.

Response: MSCHF didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Attorneys: Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP represents Nike.

The case is Nike Inc. v. MSCHF Prod. Studio Inc., E.D.N.Y., No. 21-cv-01679, 3/29/21.

(Updates March 29 story to add reference to rap artist Lil Nas X's alleged collaboration with MSCHF.)

To contact the reporter on this story: Peter Hayes in Washington at PHayes@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Rob Tricchinelli at rtricchinelli@bloomberglaw.com; Carmen Castro-Pagán at ccastro-pagan@bloomberglaw.com

To read more articles log in. To learn more about a subscription click here.