Who gets to own the Starboy name?
The Weeknd engages in a legal battle over yet another person using the Starboy trademark
It is one of those situations that occur once in a while but as an artist you pray it never happens to you. However, with a population of over 7.6 billion people and at least 5 million artists worldwide, the chances of this occurring tends to fall on a decent side of the ratio scale. Hence, the legal SafeNet of trademarking and registration to identify the item or name with a source and lay claim to ownership.
Abel Tesfaye better known as The Weeknd released an album late in 2016 titled Starboy and further hinted sometime last year that he may very soon retire from being The Weeknd. The title track of the album was The Weeknd’s third song to hit number one on The Billboard Hot 100 Chart.
When the album dropped, it got a lot of people back home confused and led to a lot of questions being asked because Nigerians can accept a lot but not another country jacking off them and the only known and accepted Starboy prior to that was Wizkid, the one who gave us Ojuelegba, who flies the 'green white green' around the world and fed us endlessly with hit records.
When the Weeknd initially announced the name change, Wizkid released some tweets seemingly shading the Canadian artiste.
Shortly after his fallout with the erstwhile label, EME in 2013, Wizkid had adopted the name ‘Starboy’ and even gone ahead to launch his label under the same name, ‘Starboy Entertainment’. He has also referenced the name in some of his tracks including ‘Come Closer’ which he featured Weeknd’s countryman Drake and continues to use it as a pseudo in his recent songs.
But the subject of this lawsuit is not Wizkid as reports have it The Weeknd’s lawyers filed documentation against a realtor named Eymun Talasazan who had filed to trademark the ‘Starboy’ imprint for his own creative projects long before the Weeknd adopted the name.
Barely two weeks after The Weeknd announced a comic book venture titled Starboy, which is due to be released in June, the estate agent also filed a trademark for the use of the phrase on his own comic book.
Googling Eymun Talasazan will provide links to high profile trademark wars in the past including for and which Weeknd’s team have tendered in their claim that this is a ploy consistently adopted by the agent to get settlements off celebrities.
With the oppositions that have risen since he announced plans to change his name, perhaps The Weeknd should see this as a sign to stick to his previously known name. Wizkid may not have gone the legal route of trying to patent the name but with the hype and popularity he has gained over the year, even an injunction won’t be enough to strip him off his Starboy identity.
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