Converse is putting its rubber-soled foot down. The Andover-based company’s iconic Chuck Taylor sneakers have been ripped off so often that it has filed a massive, multi-company trademark-infringement lawsuit this week, reports the New York Times. The lawsuit alleges that 31 retailers and brands have copied the “core elements’’ of Converse’s trademarked designs, including the black-stripe midsoles and logo-crested heel bumpers, which Women’s Wear Daily said have been officially trademarked since 2013, as well as being under “common-law trademark rights obtained by long-term use.’’
Ralph Lauren, Tory Burch, Ed Hardy, Skechers, and Wal-Mart are among the offenders listed by Converse, from whom it demands monetary damages. Converse CEO Jim Calhoun told WWD that the boom of imitators coincided with the brand’s centennial in 2008.
According to the Times, Converse is also filing with the International Trade Commission to stop any internationally manufactured sneakers with similar designs from entering the country.
The lawsuit includes the original Chuck Taylor and variations of its design which has been reinvigorated by the brand after it was purchased by Nike in 2003.
We’ve reached out to Converse to find out exactly which specific competitor styles are listed in the lawsuit, but for now here’s a quick look at some Converse-esque-ish shoes you can buy today:
And just for some further emphasis, here’s what Converse posted on its Instagram yesterday: