- Mattel v. MCA Records
Mattel v. MCA Records United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit Argued December 5, 2000
Decided July 24, 2002
Full case name Mattel, Inc. v. MCA Records, Inc. Citations 296 F.3d 894 (9th Cir. 2002) Prior history Appeal from C.D. Cal. (28 F.Supp.2d 1120) Subsequent history Request for certiorari, S.Ct.; denied. Holding Barbie Girl is protected as a parody under the trademark doctrine of nominative use and under the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Panel membership Dorothy Nelson, Melvin Brunetti, Alex Kozinski Case opinions Majority by Kozinski Joined by unanimous court
Mattel v. MCA Records, 296 F.3d 894 (9th Cir. 2002), was a series of lawsuits between Mattel and MCA Records that resulted from the 1997 Aqua song, "Barbie Girl". Mattel sued the band, saying they violated the Barbie trademark and turned Barbie into a sex object, referring to her as a "Blonde Bimbo." They alleged the song had violated their copyrights and trademarks of Barbie, and that its lyrics had tarnished the reputation of their trademark and impinged on their marketing plan. Aqua claimed that Mattel injected their own meanings into the song's lyrics and MCA Records was not about to let their hit single be suppressed without a fight. They contested Mattel's claims and countersued for defamation after Mattel had likened MCA to a bank robber.
The lawsuit filed by Mattel was dismissed by the lower courts, and this dismissal was upheld, though Mattel took their case up to the Supreme Court of the United States (Mattel's appeal was later rejected). In 2002, Judge Alex Kozinski ruled the song was protected as a parody under the trademark doctrine of nominative use and the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. He also threw out the defamation lawsuit that Aqua's record company filed against Mattel. Kozinski concluded his ruling by saying, "The parties are advised to chill." The case was dismissed, and in the process, it garnered lots of media attention for the song and the band.
Earlier, in February 2001, a court ruled that an American artist Tom Forsythe was within his rights to use Barbie dolls in his work. Some of Tom Forsythe's photographs depicted the blonde in sexually compromising positions. A court had ruled on that occasion too that parody of Barbie was an acceptable activity.
This controversy was used by journalist Naomi Klein to make a political point in her book No Logo, where she stated that the monopolies created by copyrights and trademarks are unfairly and differently enforced based on the legal budgets of the conflicting parties and their ability to defend their expressions by hiring lawyers.
Judge Alex Kozinski, writing for the panel, opened the opinion by saying:
If this were a sci-fi melodrama, it might be called Speech-Zilla meets Trademark Kong.
Despite the lawsuit, Mattel released a promotional music video of the song (with modified lyrics) on the official Barbie web site in 2009, as part of a new marketing strategy brought in to revive sales. In addition, recent Barbie product commercials have used modified lyrics to the tune of the original song.
- ^ "Aqua Now Faces Lawsuit Over "Barbie Girl"". MTV News. 12 September 1997. Archived from the original on 2007-06-10. http://web.archive.org/web/20070610113238/http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1424996/19970912/story.jhtml. Retrieved 2007-08-08.
- ^ "Supreme Court rejects ugly fight over Barbie doll". CNN.com. 27 January 2003. Archived from the original on 2007-03-27. http://web.archive.org/web/20070327212706/http://www.cnn.com/2003/LAW/01/27/scotus.barbie/. Retrieved 2007-08-08.
- ^ a b Mattel, Inc. v. MCA Records, Inc., 296 F.3d 894 (9th Cir. 2002).
- ^ a b "Barbie loses battle over bimbo image". BBC News. 25 July 2002. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/2150432.stm. Retrieved 2007-08-08.
- ^ "Official Barbie Web Site". Mattel. http://barbie.everythinggirl.com/. Retrieved 2009-09-04.
- ^ "The Barbie Music Video". Mattel. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_u-bWHFDf6M. Retrieved 2010-07-11.
- ^ Elliott, Stuart (26 August 2009). "Years Later, Mattel Embraces Barbie Girl". New York Times. http://mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/08/26/years-later-mattel-embraces-barbie-girl/?pagemode=print. Retrieved 2010-07-11.
Studio albums Compilation albumsCartoon Heroes: The Best of Aqua · Greatest Hits Remix albumsAqua Mania Remix · Bubble Mix (The Ultimate Aquarium Remixes Album) · Remix Super Best Singles"Itzy Bitsy Spider" · "Roses Are Red" · "My Oh My" · "Barbie Girl" · "Doctor Jones" · "Lollipop (Candyman)" · "Turn Back Time" · "Good Morning Sunshine" · "Cartoon Heroes" · "Around the World" · "Bumble Bees" · "We Belong to the Sea" · "Back to the 80's" · "My Mamma Said" · "How R U Doin?" · "Like a Robot" · "Playmate to Jesus" DVDs Related articles
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Barbie Girl — «Barbie Girl» Сингл … Википедия
Alex Kozinski — Infobox Judge name = Alex Kozinski imagesize = 150px caption = office = Judge on United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit termstart = 1985 termend = nominator = Ronald Reagan appointer = predecessor = Seat established successor =… … Wikipedia
Barbie — For other uses, see Barbie (disambiguation). Barbie … Wikipedia
Aqua (группа) — У этого термина существуют и другие значения, см. Aqua. Aqua Аква … Википедия
Aquarium — Студийный альбом … Википедия
Aquarius (альбом) — У этого термина существуют и другие значения, см. Aquarius. Aquarius … Википедия
Нистрём, Ленэ — Ленэ Нистрём Lene Nystrøm Ленэ Нистрём в … Википедия
Растед, Сёрен — Søren Nystrøm Rasted Søren Nystrøm Rasted … Википедия
Barbie Girl — Infobox Single Name = Barbie Girl Artist = Aqua from Album = Aquarium Genre = Pop, Dance pop, Eurodance Released = Flagicon|United States September 1997 Flagicon|United Kingdom September 1997 Flagicon|Europe June 1997 Recorded = 1997 Format = 12… … Wikipedia
Barbie Girl — Single par Aqua extrait de l’album Aquarium Face A Radio Edit Face B Extended Version Sortie … Wikipédia en Français