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Anita White countersues country trio over Lady A name battle

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ABC/Image Group LASeattle-based singer Anita White filed a new lawsuit this week against the country trio formerly known as Lady Antebellum, as part of the ongoing battle over use of the name Lady A.

According to court documents, White’s complaint was filed for “trademark infringement under federal state law.” The singer further alleges that the band’s decision to assume the name Lady A was made “with willful disregard Ms. White’s rights in her Lady A trademark, which she has used for nearly thirty years.”

In filing her lawsuit, White says she wishes to protect herself from “consumer confusion” and further obfuscation of her “brand identity.”

The country trio dropped the “Antebellum” from their name this summer in acknowledgement of the term’s associations with slavery. The name change came in the wake of a newly galvanized Civil Rights movement and nationwide protests against racial injustice and police brutality.

But White objected to the band’s new name, explaining that there would be no way to avoid burying her brand if she had to share the name with the massively popular group.

Back in July, the trio said that they’d been forced to file a lawsuit against White in order to affirm their right to use the name, after she asked for $10 million in exchange for the name. That money, the singer said, would be split between her rebranding efforts, Black Lives Matter and other artists facing similar situations.

The battle continues to rage on over use of the Lady A name. In a recent interview with The Washington Post, White argued that the band’s gestures toward compromise have ultimately been hollow, adding, “You can’t be halfway woke.”

By Carena Liptak
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