Re-Examining the Parody Defense Under the Trademark Dilution Revision Act
A 2016 case that considered whether a canvas tote bag design featuring images of a high-end fashion house’s marks constituted a parody under U.S. trademark law underscores significant contradictions and uncertainties in the assessment of parody as a defense to a trademark dilution claim.
In Louis Vuitton Malletier v. My Other Bag, the luxury fashion house sued My Other Bag, a Los Angeles, California, USA‒based company selling inexpensive canvas tote bags featuring cartoon-like drawings of iconic designer handbags on one side and the text “My Other Bag is …” on the other. The design was a play on the “My Other Car is” novelty bumper stickers. Louis Vuitton asserted claims of trademark infringement, trademark dilution by blurring, and copyright infringement stemming from My Other Bag’s use of various Louis Vuitton trademarks in the tote bag designs. Louis Vuitton Malletier v. My Other Bag, 2017 WL 3034216 (2017).