Beyonce Takes On "Feyonce" Etsy Mugs, & She's Not The First Star To Fight For Her Name
If you like it, then you better put Beyoncé's real name with the proper spelling on it — and only with her permission. Take notes, Etsy. After all, someone on the crafty DIY website was reportedly selling mugs with the moniker "Feyoncé" written on them, with a diamond ring illustration in place of the letter "o." And when the singer thought the pun was more than coincidental (they even used the accent on the letter "e," after all), Beyoncé's lawyers reportedly sent a letter calling the Etsy store out and threatening them.
At first glance, Etsy seemed to have gotten the message from her lawyers, since the mugs in question were reportedly taken down from the site. But other "Feyoncé" items still remain for sale, such as clothing items and glassware. After all, Beyoncé fans who recently got engaged need their swag. They might not even know that their idol did not approve of the merchandise. So it looks like Queen B's fight is not quite over yet!
While she might have difficulty winning an actual case if it ever came to trial — since the name "Feyoncé" could arguably be considered parody, an exception that would make it fair use — it is not surprising that she is fighting for the right to her name in the merchandise. After all, the singer's image is a big part of her persona, and it makes sense that she would want to have as much control over it as possible. And she certainly wouldn't be the first to take on the fight.
As recent times have shown, celebrities don't back down when their name or image is used without their permission, à la in the infamous mugs above. Look at Rihanna, who just won a nearly two-year long ongoing legal battle against British retailer Topshop, which used a paparazzi photo of the singer on set in a music video without her blessing. And you can't forget Tyra Banks, who reportedly hit ten wig companies with a $10 million dollar lawsuit for using her name, photograph, image, and identity to sell wigs in 2013. Then there's Scarlett Johansson who reportedly sued a French author for using her likeness in a novel in 2014 without her authorization.
It's not uncommon at all for things to get messy when stars don't approve of the use (or misuse) of their name or image. So you can't really blame Etsy for taking those Bey-disapproved mugs down now, can you? But since other "Feyoncé" items are still on sale, it remains to be seen if the singer will try to take action against those stores as well. We will have to stay tuned. (And watch out, Etsy!)
Image: MugLife62/Etsy; Getty Images