Twenty One Pilots Sues “John Doe’s” to Block T-Shirt Sales

Sellers of unauthorized merchandise at tomorrow’s Twenty One Pilots concert at the Blue Hills Bank Pavilion can expect to have their products seized by police, in line with a court order issued yesterday.

The recording company for the American hip hop group filed a lawsuit against “John Does 1-100, Jane Does 1-100 and XYZ Company,” claiming that the sale of inauthentic merchandise that carries the group’s trademarked name and images causes injury to the band’s reputation.

The complaint states that these individuals are sued “under fictitious names because their true names and capacities are unknown at this time.”

Under trademark infringement and violations of the Lanham Act, the group argued that the distribution of unauthorized merchandise causes confusion among purchasers and is often of inferior quality, damaging the band’s reputation for high quality goods.

A judge in US District Court in Boston yesterday agreed to issue a temporary restraining order restricting the sale of illegal merchandise with any or all of the group’s trademarks within a 10 mile radius of the group’s performance. The restraining order starts six hours before the show and will remain in place until six hours after the show ends. During this time, a seizure order is also in place, authorizing police to confiscate any illegal merchandise they see.

Defendants have a chance to respond and show cause to why these rights should not be granted to the group on Sept. 16 at 3 p.m. in Courtroom 12.

Twenty One Pilots, which consists of members Tyler Joseph and Josh Dun from Columbus, Ohio, is well-known throughout the United States and has sold over 20 million units of recording since their formation in 2009. The band will be performing at the Blue Hills Bank Pavilion on Saturday evening.

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