Trend Nova Names Rival in Copyright Lawsuit

Trend Nova has famously been on the receiving finish of a protracted listing of infringement lawsuits; the since-settled copyright and trademark infringement case that Versace filed in opposition to it for allegedly promoting “deliberate copies and imitations of [its] most well-known and recognizable designs, marks, symbols and different protected components,” together with the design of its well-known “J.Lo costume,” as an example, involves thoughts. However a brand new Trend Nova lawsuit flips the script, with the quick style large accusing a fellow Los Angeles-based quick style retailer of copyright infringement for taking product photographs from Trend Nova’s web site and utilizing them by itself web site as a way to compete with its well-established competitor.

Setting the stage within the criticism that it filed with the U.S. District Courtroom for the Central District of California on August 29, Trend Nova claims that it has skilled “explosive development for the reason that launch of the e-commerce web site in 2013,” with its web site “now rank[ing] as probably the most considered style websites in the US.” By means of its “dynamic e-commerce web site,” Trend Nova says that it “markets and sells a various vary of life-style clothes and niknaks for males, girls, and youngsters, with as many as 200,000 totally different types provided on the market, together with over 1,000 new types per week, and as much as a number of hundred new types per day, with value factors usually inside the $10-$50 vary.” 

On the coronary heart of its e-commerce web site and corresponding social media channels, Trend Nova claims in its newly-filed lawsuit, are “visually interesting, hanging photographic photographs and movies of [models] carrying or utilizing [its] merchandise – which serve to draw client curiosity and, finally, purchases of Trend Nova merchandise.” 

Trend Nova Names Rival in Copyright Lawsuit

In mild of the success of its e-commerce-centric enterprise, Trend Nova claims that budding younger rival Blush Mark has “deliberately and wrongfully stolen [its] precious product photographs and is utilizing them on its web site to market and promote merchandise that straight compete with the exact same Trend Nova merchandise depicted in these product photographs.” Particularly, Trend Nova factors to eleven photographs that it maintains copyright registrations for, which it alleges that the almost-two-year-old Blush Mark has “downloaded digital copies of from the Trend Nova web site,” eliminated the file names from (in furtherance of an try and “conceal [its] infringement of Trend Nova’s copyright rights in and to product photographs owned and/or completely licensed by Trend Nova”), and printed to its personal web site with out Trend Nova’s authorization.

Blush Mark “engaged in its infringing makes use of of the photographs at problem for the aim of promoting, promoting, selling, providing, and promoting merchandise that straight compete with Trend Nova’s merchandise,” Trend Nova contends, “with the intention of acquiring an unfair enterprise benefit in opposition to Trend Nova and avoiding the funding of time, cash and sources that might in any other case be essential to develop and create its personal product imagery.” 

With the foregoing in thoughts, Trend Nova units out a single declare of copyright infringement, in addition to copyright administration info violations as a result of Blush Mark’s alleged elimination of Trend Nova’s copyright administration info for the product photographs at problem. The retailer is looking for financial damages, specifically, “all damages sustained by Trend Nova on account of Blush Mark’s infringements of Trend Nova’s copyright rights in and to the photographs, in addition to all beneficial properties, income, and benefits realized by Blush Mark from stated infringements,” together with injunctive reduction barring Blush Mark from persevering with to infringe its imagery and from eradicating or altering the copyright administration info tied to such imagery. 

A Case Over Copyright or Competitors? 

A learn between the strains of the Trend Nova lawsuit suggests that there’s extra occurring right here than only a easy copyright infringement battle; the case appears to heart extra considerably on competitors between the 2 quick style corporations, with Trend Nova asserting that Blush Mark’s infringement comes because the newer market entrant has been busy “pursu[ing] a enterprise mannequin that replicates [the] profitable enterprise mannequin that has led Trend Nova to be the ‘quick style’ trade chief,” together with providing up “merchandise are the identical as and extremely much like Trend Nova’s merchandise, focused to the identical clients, and bought at comparable value factors.”

In brief, Trend Nova alleges that “Blush Mark and its merchandise straight compete with Trend Nova.” 

Trend Nova has been accused previously of making an attempt to monopolize the market and preserve its spot on the quick style totem pole within the U.S., and the corporate could also be feeling threatened provided that its aggressive benefit rests largely on its potential to supply up substantial portions of stylish clothes and equipment for low, low costs. In spite of everything, Blush Mark is providing at the very least a few of the very same merchandise for even decrease costs (it boasts that its “types begin as little as $5”), and gaining rising media consideration and a rising variety of Instagram and TikTok tags within the course of. It’s price noting that Trend Nova’s wares come from a set of “a whole bunch of producers … that are employed by middlemen to provide clothes for style manufacturers.” Given the shortage of exclusivity at play in at the very least a few of its provider preparations, these clothes will be bought by different manufacturers, reminiscent of Blush Mark, which appears to be what’s going on right here. 

Since replicating the quick style enterprise mannequin (with out going as far as to intrude with Trend Nova’s present contracts with distributors to spice up its enterprise, as an example, or misappropriating its commerce secret-protected buyer and/or provider lists) doesn’t give rise to an actionable offense, Trend Nova seems to be left with the copyright infringement claims that it has lodged in opposition to Blush Mark as a way of chipping away at its burgeoning competitor.

One other hanging takeaway: The overarching push in the direction of ESG in style and the oft-reported penchant amongst Gen-Z and millennial customers for sustainably-made wares has not put a lot of a dent within the international quick style market, which was price an estimated $91.23 billion as of 2021, and enduring competitors amongst established entities and rising new gamers.

A rep for Blush Mark was not instantly accessible for remark concerning the Trend Nova lawsuit. 

The case is FASHION NOVA, LLC, v. Blush Mark, Inc., 2:22-cv-06127 (C.D.Cal.)

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