Published: Thu, May 10, 2018
Arts&Culture | By Kristi Paul

TTAB gives doctor positive diagnosis in Dr Dre dispute

TTAB gives doctor positive diagnosis in Dr Dre dispute

Billboard has reached out to reps for Dr. Dre and Dr. Draion Burch for comment.

While the board recognized the similarity in stylization and pronunciation of the two names, their commonality as "entertainment services", which Dr. Dre asserts, was not enough to relate the services associated with their respective brands.

When given the cease and desist letter from Dr. Dre, Burch stated that he was 'appalled how someone would think I wanted to be them'.

Burch's "Dr. Drai" is derived from his real first name. Furthermore, Drai is Burch's actual name and he is actually a doctor.

Burch's lawyers, however, countered with the fact that simply because the two names sound similar doesn't mean that Burch is stepping on Young's toes. "Although there are some visual differences, whether spelled as DRE or DRAI, the word has the same pronunciation and connotation of a name".

So there was some points on Dre's behalf. They also claimed it would be hard for a consumer to mistakenly purchase a product from Dr. Drai when he charges $5,000 for speaking engagements.

In the end, that's exactly what Administrative Trademark Judge Cheryl Goodman found.

The doctor went further and added that he would not want to trade on Dr Dre's reputation, who he accused of being known for misogyny and "homophobic things".

"Generally, trademark courts allow people a so-called "sacred right" to use their own names in commerce", he said. Here, the court also looked to the primary reason for trademark law: source identification and confusion.

U.S. rap artist Dr Dre has failed in his opposition against two trademarks filed by a gynaecologist, with one lawyer suggesting an appeal would be unsuccessful too.

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