Experience Hendrix, LLC v. Hendrixlicensing.Com, Ltd

762 F.3d 829 (9th Cir. 2013)


Experience (P) holds a number of trademarks associated with Jimi Hendrix. P uses these trademarks to market, sell and license Hendrix-related merchandise, including apparel, posters, and artwork. Pitsicalis (D) has also used Jimi Hendrix's celebrity status commercially. Pitsicalis owns or has licenses to use, photographs and original pieces of art depicting Hendrix, as well as visual artwork created by Hendrix himself. In 2008, D began licensing the right to use these images to produce and sell Hendrix-related merchandise, including apparel, posters, and household items. D placed marks on his licensed products that used the names 'Hendrix' and 'Jimi Hendrix,' as well as Jimi Hendrix's signature and a logo of Hendrix's headshot with a guitar. D owned two websites that promoted and sold his Hendrix merchandise. P alleged that D was infringing P's trademarks in violation of the Lanham Act. P also alleged an unfair or deceptive trade practice proscribed by Washington's Consumer Protection Act (WCPA). The district court granted P partial summary judgment on the federal Lanham Act claim. A jury found that D's trademark infringement also amounted to an unfair or deceptive trade practice under the WCPA. The jury awarded P damages under both statutes totaling $1,723,300. The district court reduced the jury's award to $60,000, and if the damages award were reinstalled on appeal, a new trial was warranted. P seeks reinstatement of the jury's entire damages award.