PayPal has filed a lawsuit against struggling music service Pandora. It claims the latter’s ‘P’ logo is purposely designed to look like the payment processing firm’s ‘PP’ logo to trick PayPal customers into mixing up the apps.
The suit, filed in Manhattan federal court last week, argues that people will accidentally visit Pandora’s radio app instead of PayPal due to the “unlawfully similar” logos. It’s claimed that Pandora’s design, unveiled last October, purposely copies PayPal’s to take advantage of the company’s popularity.
“Pandora deserted its longstanding logo and latched itself on to the increasingly popular PayPal Logo as part of its efforts to catch up to its competition,” wrote PayPal’s lawyers.
PayPal didn’t hold back when it came to tearing into Pandora. Lawyers noted the “overwhelming” challenges it faces from Spotify and Apple Music while having “no obvious path to profitability.”
PayPal is also worried about the effect the resemblance will have on its recognizable logo. “The Pandora Logo is causing the status of the PayPal Logo as a unique identifier of the PayPal brand to be blurred,” it claims. "Even the slightest delay in locating and using PayPal’s payments platform causes customers inconvenience, and degrades PayPal’s standing with customers and merchants."
Weirdly, PayPal seems particularly worried that people could think it’s expanding into the music streaming business. “This confusion and dilution cause substantial harm to PayPal. PayPal does not want its customers to be deceived into believing that PayPal is losing its focus on payments by moving into music streaming services,” states the lawsuit.
As many on Twitter have pointed out, it’s difficult to argue that the two logos don’t look similar. Gizmodo notes that before filing the suit, PayPal sent 110 pages of social media posts to Pandora demonstrating the brand confusion but the music firm did nothing, leading to the current lawsuit. Over 20 Facebook and Twitter posts are included in the case to illustrate the similarities.
PayPal is demanding an injunction against Pandora to stop it from using the logo.