Kanye West wins 'Coinye' Bitcoin infringement lawsuit

28/07/14

Coinye icon with added fishtail
Image caption Coinye icon with added fishtail

Kanye West has won a trademark lawsuit against the creators of the Coinye Bitcoin, a parody crypto currency inspired by the rapper.

In January, West's lawyers issued a cease and desist letter citing "gimmick infringement".

They demanded that the website and related social media accounts be deactivated.

In response, the creators added a fishtail to the logo in reference to South Park's Fishsticks episode.

It mocks West for taking himself too seriously.

The lawsuit said: "Defendants have usurped Mr West's name and likeness for the sole purpose of propping up the perceived value of the defendant's digital coin mine.

Coinye icon

Documents filed this week show that 10 of the named defendants lost by default because they did not respond to the case.

The only remaining step is for the court to order a final judgement in favour of West.

Robbie Hontele, from the Netherlands, was initially the only defendant to challenge the case and West dropped his lawsuit against Hontele.

He told Ars Technica: "I'm happy to see the blockchain is not mentioned in the verdict and that the settlement has been made without any admission of wrongdoing. I will be celebrating tonight."

Coinye is one of many currencies created after the rise of the digital currency bitcoin.

It emerged at the end of 2013, when the currency's creators began posting about it on Twitter and online forums.

The Coinye Twitter account is still active and hasn't been removed.

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