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Apparently Michael Jordan doesn’t own the right to the basketball airwaves he once called his own. Not in China, at least
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The Basketball Hall of Famer and Charlotte Hornets owner lost a lawsuit against a Chinese footwear maker named Qiaodan Sports Co., following a suit he filed in 2012. “Quiodan” apparently is a rough Mandarin translation of the name “Jordan,” and the brand’s logo just happened to feature a dude jumping through the air while holding a basketball.
"'Jordan' is not the only possible reference for 'Qiaodan' in the trademark under dispute," it cited a transcript of the verdict as saying.
"In addition, 'Jordan' is a common surname used by Americans," the court added according to the report Monday, and the logo was in the shape of a person with no facial features, so that it was "hard" for consumers to identify it as Jordan.
There was insufficient evidence to prove the trademark referred to the US star, it concluded.
The report went on to reference the fact that China is often noted for its lax treatment of counterfeiters, be they massive apparel producers featuring a Jumpman-inspired logo, or cut-and-paste copyright infringers.
In Quiaodan’s defense, however, that logo reminds more of Vince Carter’s windmill attack during the 2000 NBA Slam Dunk Contest than it does Jordan’s decades-old shoe company logo. And it’s not as if MJ himself hasn’t stolen some go-to finishing bits from the best of them.
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