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Prepare a Report on" A Case Study on the Intellectual Property Infringement of Nike's Trademark"

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Added on: 2023-04-29 06:26:27
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Question Task Id: 0

Executive Summary

This executive summary is a quick rundown of the main ideas included in the report on MSCHF Product Studio's trademark infringement of Nike. The paper opens by emphasising the value of intellectual property rights in preventing infringement on a company's assets, company, and reputation. The case study that follows discusses how MSCHF modified Satan Shoes and used Nike's brand without authorization, leading to legal action and a product recall.

The study lists the types of intellectual property violations that are at stake in the situation, such as trademark infringement, infringement of copyright, and the product's use of human blood. It also addresses how the violation has affected Nike's brand reputation and financial value, emphasizing on the possible consumer loss and sales.

Overall, this paper offers a thorough investigation of MSCHF Product Studio's trademark infringement against Nike, showing the significance of intellectual property plus the potential repercussions of infringement for businesses. Additionally, it sheds light on the moral, ethical, and legal concerns surrounding intellectual property as well as the necessity of strong IP rights protection and enforcement.

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Case Study

III. Identified Problems

  1. Categories of Intellectual Property
  2. Breach of Intellectual Property Rights
  3. Impact on Business Value

VII. Infringements

VIII. Legal Laws

  1. Ethical and Social Issues
  2. Conclusion
  3. References/ Bibliography


Legal protections known as intellectual property rights (IPR) are granted to literary, artistic, and economically exploited symbols, names, and designs. IPR strives to promote innovation and creativity by guaranteeing creators full-fledged rights to their works and restricting illegal use of such works. IPR is essential for companies to protect their assets, company, especially reputation since infringement may adversely undermine the company's value, reputation, and consumer trust.

The case investigation into MSCHF Products the studio, and Brooklyn-based art collective, breaching Nike's trademark is presented in this paper. Nike is a well-known producer of athletic products and is noted for its beautiful innovative designs and extremely strong brand awareness. The artistic collective MSCHF Product Studio creates and markets limited-edition products.

The case study will examine the difficulties that have been found, the types of intellectual property problems, the infringement of those rights, and the effects on the value of the company. The paper will also cover frequent ways that intellectual property rights are violated, various legal frameworks available to defend such rights, and social and ethical concerns about intellectual property.

Case Study

In 2022, Nike filed a lawsuit against MSCHF Product Studio for the unauthorized use of Nike's trademark in their "Satan Shoes." MSCHF modified Nike's Air Max 97 sneaker by adding a pentagram, the word "Satan," and a drop of human blood in the sole of the shoe. Nike claimed that the modified shoe was a copyright infringement and tarnished Nike's reputation. The court granted Nike's request for a temporary restraining order, and MSCHF agreed to recall all the Satan Shoes and offer a refund to the customers who bought them.

The case study highlights the importance of protecting intellectual property rights and the consequences of infringement. MSCHF's use of Nike's trademark without permission resulted in legal action and significant damage to Nike's reputation. The case study also raises questions about the ethical and social issues related to intellectual property, such as the balance between protecting exclusive rights to creations and promoting creativity and innovation.

Identified Problems

The case study's main issue is the unlawful use of Nike's trademark, which is an example of intellectual property. Intellectual property includes all works of the mind that are employed in trade, including inventions, literary and creative works, symbols, names, pictures, and designs. In order to prevent unauthorised use or duplication of these inventions, intellectual property laws safeguard the owners' exclusive rights.

In this instance, MSCHF violated Nike's trademark rights by altering the Air Max 97 shoe without the company's consent. A pentagram, the phrase "Satan," and a drop of human blood were included into the shoe's sole as part of the alteration, yielding a result that was very similar to Nike's original design. Due to MSCHF's unauthorised use of Nike's trademark, Nike suffered damage to its reputation and customer misinformation, both of which had negative effects.

Categories of Intellectual Property Issues

The four basic categories of intellectual property concerns are trade secrets, copyrights, trademarks, and patents. Copyrights, trademarks, trade secrets, and patents all provide legal protection for unique works of art, literary, and musical compositions, business processes, brand names, and logos utilised in commerce.

In the case of Nike and MSCHF, the issue was the unauthorized use of Nike's trademark. A trademark is a symbol, word, or phrase used to identify and distinguish a company's products or services from those of others. Nike's trademark includes its iconic swoosh logo, brand name, and design elements used in its products. MSCHF's modification of Nike's Air Max 97 sneaker violated Nike's trademark by creating a product that closely resembled Nike's original product.

The right of publicity, which guards against unauthorised commercial use of a person's name, likeness, voice, and other distinguishing qualities, may also be relevant in this situation. In this instance, Lil Nas X's unauthorised utilisation of Nike's trademark in his music video may have violated Nike's right to publicity.

It is important to remember that intellectual property laws might differ from country to jurisdiction, and that unauthorised use of intellectual property can result in harsh legal repercussions for the offending party. Nike launched a lawsuit against MSCHF in the Nike and MSCHF dispute, citing trademark infringement, dilution, as unfair competition. The parties reached an agreement, and MSCHF agreed to voluntarily recall the Satan Shoes and stop selling any future goods using Nike's trademark on them.

Breach of Intellectual Property Rights

MSCHF's modification of Nike's Air Max 97 sneaker and the unauthorized use of Nike's trademark amounted to trademark infringement. Nike's trademark was used without obtaining permission, and MSCHF sold the modified shoe under the name "Satan Shoes," which misled consumers and tarnished Nike's reputation. Furthermore, MSCHF's use of a drop of human blood in the sole of the shoe raised ethical and social concerns.

Impact on Business Value:

Infringement of intellectual property rights can have a significant impact on a company's business value, reputation, and customer trust. In the case of Nike and MSCHF Product Studio, the unauthorized use of Nike's trademark in the modified Satan Shoes resulted in legal action and a recall of the product. The lawsuit and negative publicity surrounding the infringement tarnished Nike's brand reputation and may have led to a loss of customers and sales.

For various businesses to preserve their competitive edge, generate a source of income, and draw investors, intellectual property rights must be protected. Businesses spend a lot of money creating their brand identity, goods, and services, while IPR helps to protect their intellectual property from being misused by any other businesses or other parties. IPR gives businesses the sole right to use, licence, and sell their discoveries, inventions, and other intellectual property in any way they see suitable.

Brand labels, logos, and other distinguishing symbols that distinguish a company's goods or services are protected by trademarks. Books, music, & software are among the creative and literary works that are protected by copyrights. Trade secrets safeguard private information, such as formulae, procedures, or client lists, that offers a business a competitive edge.

Intellectual property infringement may occur in many different forms, such as utilising a company's trademark or logo without permission, duplicating or distributing that company's products, or divulging trade secrets to rival businesses. Nike and MSCHF Product Studio engaged in a legal dispute over MSCHF's modification of Nike's Air Max 97 shoe and unauthorised use of Nike's brand.

Utilising a company's trademark and brand name without permission, duplicating or distributing that company's product, or divulging its trade secrets to a rival are all examples of intellectual property infringement. In the matter of Nike and MSCHF Product Studio, MSCHF changed Nike's Air Max 97 shoe and improperly exploited Nike's brand, which led to a copyright violation.

Companies have access to legal protections for their ownership of intellectual property rights, including trademarks, copyrights, patents, and trade secrets. For businesses engaged in development and research, patent protection is essential since it grants them the only right to use their breakthroughs and creations. The use of comparable brand names or logos by other parties is prevented by trademark protection for a company's brand identity. Literary and creative works are protected by copyrights, which forbid unauthorised duplication or distribution of these works. Confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements can be used to protect trade secrets by forbidding partners or employees from sharing sensitive information with other parties.

To sum up, in order for businesses to safeguard their assets, brand, and reputation against infringement, intellectual property rights are crucial. The financial value, reputation, and consumer trust of a corporation can all suffer significantly from intellectual property rights violations. Businesses should take legal action to safeguard their intellectual property rights by employing trade secrets, trademarks, patents, and other legal tools. In order to avoid and deal with any infringements, they should be aware of how intellectual property violations affect the value of their company and their reputation.


Intellectual property rights safeguard all types of works, including inventions, creative creations, literary works, and distinctive trademarks. As a result, there are several types of intellectual property rights, and there are numerous ways in which they might be violated.

Copyright infringement happens when someone uses or grows again a piece of original work with the owner's consent, such as when a book or music is copied. Patent infringement happens when someone manufactures, applications or sells a product with the patent owner's consent. Misappropriation of trade secrets happens when someone inappropriately obtains or exploits sensitive business knowledge that belongs to a different person, such as an algorithm or method.

In the case research, MSCHF violated Nike's trademark by utilising and altering its Air Max 97 footwear without permission. When somebody uses a trademark unauthorised permission or makes a product which is identical to a registered brand, it might confuse or mislead customers. Because of MSCHF's unauthorised use of Nike's trademark & alteration of the Air Max 97 shoe, a product the resembled Nike's initial offering was created, causing buyers to assume that the product was linked with Nike.

Additionally, MSCHF's use of Nike's trademark without authorization, such as in the promotion and sale of the "Satan Shoes," also misled consumers and damaged Nike's reputation. Trademarks play a crucial role in identifying and distinguishing products and services, and unauthorized use of a trademark can harm the reputation of the owner and lead to confusion among consumers.

Individuals and businesses can register their rights to intellectual property to protect them against infringements and pursue legal action against offenders. In the instance of Nike & MSCHF, Nike brought a trademark infringement lawsuit to defend its trademark.

Legal Laws

To safeguard intellectual property rights, many legal laws can be used, include trademark law, copyright legislation, patent law, even trade secret law. Nike filed a trademark infringement complaint in the matter study to preserve its trademark. Trademark law protects unique marks that identify and differentiate a company's goods or services from those of others. It grants the trademark owner the only right to utilize the trademark when dealing with the products or services with which it has been registered. The owner of a trademark that is registered can sue anybody who uses their brand without authorization.

The Lanham Act governs trademark law in the United States, and it allows for the filing of trademarks as well as the legal remedies accessible to trademark owners. A trademark owner may apply for an injunction to halt the infringement, in addition to penalties plus attorney's costs, under the Lanham Act. The owner may also order that any infringing items be destroyed.

In the case of Nike vs. MSCHF, Nike filed a lawsuit under the Lanham Act to protect its trademark from infringement. The court granted Nike's request for a temporary restraining order, and MSCHF agreed to recall all the Satan Shoes and offer a refund to the customers who bought them. The case is still ongoing, and the court will determine the final outcome.

Ethical and Social Issues

The rights to intellectual property raise a number of moral and social concerns, such as how to strike a balance between preserving innovation and advancing public access to expertise, how they affect consumer welfare and economic growth, and how they support cultural diversity.

On the one hand, encouraging innovation and creativity necessitates the safeguarding of rights to intellectual property. They promote the creation of new products and concepts by maintaining authors', artists', and inventors' exclusive rights to their works. It is said that without either of these incentives, creativity and inventiveness would be stifled.

However, there is worry that overly strict intellectual property laws may stifle innovation and restrict public utilisation of knowledge. This is especially true when it comes to patents, since the high expense of acquiring and upholding patents can restrict access to life-saving medicines and medical technology in impoverished nations.

In addition, there is worry that monopolies and competition may be encouraged by the application of intellectual property rules. Customers may pay more as a result and have fewer options.


The Nike v. MSCHF case study emphasizes the need of safeguarding intellectual property rights. The financial value, reputation, and consumer trust of a corporation can all suffer significantly from intellectual property rights violations. Understanding the many types of intellectual property plus the laws that may be used to protect them is crucial for businesses.

Additionally, there are moral and social concerns about intellectual property that must be addressed. Finding the right balance between defending innovation and fostering open access to knowledge is crucial. It is crucial to take into account how intellectual property affects consumer welfare and economic growth.

In conclusion, intellectual property rights are essential for protecting innovation and creativity. However, it is important to ensure that these rights are not overly restrictive and that they promote competition and consumer choice. By understanding the different categories of intellectual property and the legal laws that can be applied to protect them, companies can protect their assets, brand, and reputation from infringement.


  • Barshay, J. (2021, April 8). Nike Sues Over ‘Satan Shoes’ With Human Blood. The New York Times. https://www.nytimes.com/2021/04/08/business/nike-sues-mschf-satan-shoes.html
  • Chen, Y. (2017). Intellectual property rights and innovation: Evidence from the human genome. Journal of Political Economy, 125(1), 1-39. https://doi.org/10.1086/688749
  • Furrow, J. L., Greaney, T. L., Johnson, S. H., Jost, T. S., & Schwartz, R. L. (2019). Health law: Cases, materials, and problems (8th ed.). West Academic Publishing.
  • Leaffer, M. A. (2019). Understanding copyright law (2nd ed.). LexisNexis.
  • MSCHF Product Studio, Inc. (2021). MSCHF. https://mschf.xyz/
  • O'Dair, M. (2018). Copyright and E-learning: A Guide for Practitioners (2nd ed.). Facet Publishing.
  • S. Patent and Trademark Office. (n.d.). What is a trade secret? https://www.uspto.gov/trademarks-getting-started/trademark-basics/what-trademark
  • S. Patent and Trademark Office. (2022). Trademarks. https://www.uspto.gov/trademarks-getting-started/trademark-basics
  • World Intellectual Property Organization. (2021). Intellectual Property. https://www.wipo.int/about-ip/en/
  • Uploaded By : Katthy Wills
  • Posted on : April 29th, 2023
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