FASHION LAW: ADIDAS ACCUSES MARANT OF COPYRIGHT
Adidas, the ever popular designer of the famously known Superstar and Stan Smith sneakers, has accused Isabel Marant of copyright infringement. The sportswear brand claims Marant illegally copied the Stan Smith sneaker by imitating its distinct red heel tab in her newly produced Bart low-tops.
So the question of whether Adidas has grounds to pursue a copyright infringement case lingers. It just so happens that the brand is no stranger to cases such as this if you remember the 2008 case against Payless Shoes that arose to protect Adidas’ key design feature- the colored part on the outer back heel. It’s been seven years since this case and still it seems that many designers have yet to learn.
Adidas officially registered with the federal government so they may very well have a case some are saying: “Because the Isabel Marant shoe employs a very similar design element, the heel tab – one that is arguably employed by Adidas to serve as an indication of source – Adidas may very well have a merited infringement claim.”
The font type varies between the two styles – “Stan Smith” displays across a red tab variation in white lettering along the brand logo, while Marant shows a metallic red with “Isabel Marant” written also in white – as well as the thread color.
In trademark infringement cases such as these, a big reason lawmakers will consider is whether or not the similarity is likely to cause customer confusion between the two varying styles. The Adidas sneakers price for roughly US$94 whereas Marant’s cost US$410.