Randy Miramontez /
21 July 2014Trademarks

US TV series Glee facing possible name change, judge rules

A judge from the UK High Court has ruled that the producers of US television show Glee may have to change its name after losing a trademark dispute with a London-based comedy club.

According to the Associated Press, Twentieth Century Fox, which produces the series, will have to change the name of the show and pay damages if it loses an appeal.

In the meantime, Fox has been ordered to make an interim payment of £100,000 ($170,000) to Comic Enterprises, holders of ‘the Glee Club’ trademark.

The trademark was first registered in 1994 by the owners of comedy club chain Comic Enterprises.

The television show was first broadcast in the UK in 2009 on Channel 4 and transferred to Sky two years later.

The suit had been filed in 2011, but  WIPRreported in February that deputy Judge Robert Wyand QC, presiding over the case, ruled in favour of the comedy club after stating there was a “likelihood of confusion”.

In his latest statement, Wyand said: “I find it hard to believe that the cost of the re-titling and publicising of the new name would be so prohibitive compared to the value of the series.”

The case will now go to the Appeals Court after Fox confirmed it would appeal against the ruling.

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More on this story

8 February 2016   The producer of US TV show “Glee” has lost an appeal against an earlier ruling in which it was found liable for trademark infringement following a battle against a London-based comedy club.
25 May 2016   UK-based comedy venue The Glee Club has won its second trademark case before the UK Court of Appeal against US TV show “Glee”.