Deadmau5 Files Copyright Infringement Lawsuit Against Vape Company
On February 5th, Joel Zimmerman's transactional attorney Dina LaPolt sent Alham Benyameen, principal of West Coast Vape Supply, a cease and desist letter for their line of electronic cigarettes called deadmodz, which intentionally capitalizes off of deadmau5's name and far-reaching fan base. Benyameen subsequently changed the design of the deadmodz website and logo to no longer resemble deadmau5's logo.
LaPolt responded with another letter detailing that simply changing the website and logo design does not exonerate the company of copyright infringement.
"Please understand that your attempted changes do not negate that fact that you have violated and continue to violate our client’s rights, and thus are liable for, among other things, trademark and copyright infringement and attendant damages. In fact, your changes only highlight your acknowledgement and concession of wrongdoing, which admittedly is willful, knowing and intentional."
After Benyameen failed to respond to these letters, a lawsuit was filed against West Coast Vape Supply for copyright infringement and false association on Thursday, March 31st. Joel's attorney Irene Lee sent a statement to THR.
"Instead of conceding their wrongdoing and agreeing to comply with our requests, they refused to acknowledge deadmau5’s intellectual property rights and their wrongdoing, necessitating this legal action," Lee wrote to THR. "We intend to vigorously protect deadmau5’s rights."
The lawsuit asks for statutory and punitive damages as well as a permanent injunction to prevent West Coast Vape form legally being able to use the name "deadmodz."
"Our client faces unscrupulous people trying to take advantage goodwill associated with his intellectual property and his fame. We are grateful for our fans and believe it’s our obligation to make sure our fans are not duped into buying things that deadmau5 did not authorize," Lee wrote to THR.