steinar-engeland-154411.jpgIn the world of trademarks, it can be tricky to navigate the sea of pre-existing ideas and logos to find something that can be uniquely yours. Some cases of trademark infringement could charitably be put down to a lack of research on the part of those infringing, although they do still bear responsibility for the oversight. But in the case of large, global brands, it's far harder to claim ignorance should your own logo be found to be too similar to theirs. 

PayPal has filed a lawsuit against Pandora for such an offense, claiming that the music streaming service's newly redesigned logo is too similar to their own. In the lawsuit, PayPal has held little to nothing back on their feelings towards Pandora and the alleged infringement, stating that the company is facing "serious commercial challenges that threaten its very survival" and that "Pandora has no obvious path to profitability." The suit alleges that Pandora willingly created a similar logo to PayPal in order to piggyback off of the popularity of the payment platform, and cites several tweets from people noting the similarity between the two and the confusion it caused. The new Pandora logo is a blue P, similar in design and color to one of the P's used in the PayPal logo.

In the suit, PayPal states that they tried to settle matter out of court, claiming that they raised concerns about the similarity of the logo to Pandora in a series of "letters and conversations," none of which resulted in any action taken by Pandora. For Pandora, the suit is undoubtedly an unwanted distraction as the company tries to stay afloat in the increasingly competitive streaming music space. While the company may not be what it once was, it seems difficult to believe that Pandora would be careless with the redesign of its logo, or unaware of PayPal's branding. Whether it was an innocent mistake or a malicious attempt at infringement, a ruling against Pandora could prove to be a portend of doom for the streaming service. 

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