Hajduk Should Continue with Legal Action against Liam Gallagher, Say Experts

Daniela Rogulj

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You’re all probably familiar by now with the Hajduk v. Liam Gallagher story – and if you’re not, here’s a quick recap. Namely, Liam Gallagher and his clothing label Pretty Green have been accused of copying the badge of Hajduk Split, which can be seen on some of their latest arrivals. You can read our initial story here

Numerous media reports in Croatia and England have picked up the story since, and now the question remains of whether Hajduk will move forward with the legal action they are currently considering. 

Liam Gallagher, however, claims there is no relation between the features on his Pretty Green garments and Hajduk Split. He even released a Tweet over the weekend saying he’ll see Hajduk in court over the accusation.

“All these cray reports bout the man and his glorious fashion label being accused of ripiforcation of the rubadub dub in Croatia  it bears the soul of a scooter rally mod badgeiforcation I’ll see you in court ya big girls blouses pffff.”

Well, while there might be similarities to a mod badge, this Pretty Green badge is still far too close to that of Hajduk. 

Did Liam ask Hajduk for permission? Could Hajduk actually take Gallagher to court? Experts chimed into Slobodna Dalmacija on March 4, 2019, to tell us more. 

“From what I have seen, there are very reasonable suspicions that this is a plagiarism of Hajduk and Hajduk’s legal team, according to what is seen in the media on this subject, has a strong point in the legal battle to prove the violation of copyright,” says designer Petar Jerković from Split, the owner of the company “Visualsport”, which works with the design of sports jerseys, and whose works were often the target of plagiarism.

“I’m not a lawyer, but what I know as a designer, is that it’s a matter of plagiarism if seventy percent of the work is the same, and in this case, it’s more than that. The ratios, colors, shapes, even the border of the coats of arms are identical. It is hard to believe that the person who designed the coat of arms at Pretty Green didn’t at least see the Hajduk badge before,” says Jerković, adding that, of course, now everything is a matter of proving it in court, that is, if Hajduk’s legal team decides to seek justice at all.

“As far as I know, there is English law, which is the protection of intellectually owned property, which is much more rigorously set than the European one, but in reality it is not easy to conduct such court processes because they last and cost,” says designer Jerković, who is currently leading a court dispute of the same nature, and has already experienced plagiarism several times from different parts of the world.

“Frankly, when someone does it outside of our borders, it’s challenging to handle, because such court processes, I repeat, are costly. But in this case, if there is a dispute at all, it will be primarily a graphics expert who will give an opinion on the similarities and differences between the two badges. If it was about different colors, and if the checkers, I do not know, were yellow and black, then Pretty Green might have been the author of the coat of arms, but I think that there is simply too much of a similarity here for it to be a coincidence.

In addition, if the model is not the Hajduk coat of arms, but the emblems of the subculture group from England, then Liam Gallagher must prove it in the eventual trial,” says Jerković, who reminds that the fight for copyright protection is one of the most critical issues of today.

Designer Boris Ljubičić, who has been seriously involved in design and national identity throughout his career, agrees that this is most likely plagiarism. 

“Yes, they say that if it covers seventy percent, then it is plagiarism, and this is the question of up to ninety percent of the elements!’

Will Hajduk continue with legal action after all? I guess we will wait and see. 

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