Dr. Dre’s Beats Electronic Is Bringing Suit Against Yamaha For Infringing Headphone Design

dr. dre

AllHipHop.com reports that Dr. Dre is suing electronics company Yamaha for alleged infringement on the producer’s now-iconic Beats By Dre headphones.

Legal representatives of the rapper-cum-businessman are seeking at least $75,000 in damages for Trade Dress Infringement, Unfair Competition and Patent Infringement. The lawsuit argues that Yamaha’s PRO line of headphones heavily borrows design elements from Dre’s near-ubiquitous over the ear Beats.

We have more details on this story after the jump. 

The suit states that the similarity in design between Yamaha’s PRO headphone line and Beats is such that many consumers will be confused as to which they are purchasing, thus hurting Beats’ bottom line while Yamaha unfairly reaps the benefits. This is not an accidental infringement, according to the suit, but willful and knowing.

It’s hard to say that Yamaha didn’t make the connection between their hardware and Dre’s; the court documents include marketing materials from Yamaha that would appear to reference the Beats headphones, featuring slogans such as “Dr… who?” and “A Better Beat”.

“Consumers appreciated the design, as well as the sound quality, of Beats and began wearing the Beats headphones around their necks as a fashion accessory even when not listening to music,” notes the suit. “In fact, the design of the Beats headphones has been a significant driver of the commercial success of the products.” Well, did Yamaha say they were making sound necklaces? No? Then case closed.

But in all seriousness, it looks like Yamaha is facing the unenviable prospect of getting… beat by Dre.

I’ll show myself out.

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