What's the difference between a girl-kissing pop sensation and an Australian luxury loungewear designer? Well, two letters: "i" and "e" — and apparently that's too close for comfort.
On Tuesday (June 16), an Australian newspaper reported that a local fashion designer, Katie Perry, had been served a cease-and-desist order from lawyers representing singer [artist id="1962774"]Katy Perry[/artist], aimed at stopping her from trademarking her birth name for a clothing label.
According to The Australian, Katie Perry started a "luxury loungewear" fashion line more than two years ago and had been selling her designs online and through local markets. Last week, she opened her first retail outlet in a suburb of Sydney and filed paperwork to trademark her name for both the store and her line.
That's when she received a letter from a Queensland-based legal firm, Fisher Adams Kelly, who were acting on behalf of Katy Perry, asking her to stop selling her line.
"I got such a huge shock. It really felt like I was being intimidated and bullied into signing everything away," Katie Perry told the newspaper. "It asked me to give up the trademark, withdraw sales of my clothes, withdraw any advertising and any Web sites and sign that I will not in the future use a similar trademark to Katy Perry. I pretty much burst into tears."
Perry told The Australian that she was born Katie Jane Perry and, as such, she has no plans to cease and desist just because her name happens to be similar to an internationally famous pop star.
"I love my business. I'm not going to give it away without a fight, either," she said. "I'm not trying to become a singer. I'm not pretending to be her. This is my income. And it's the livelihood of my contractors as well."
Katy Perry is scheduled to play three shows in Australia in August, which should be, uh, interesting. MTV News' attempts to contact her label, Capitol Records, for comment on the situation were unsuccessful.