back to article PayPal peed off about Pandora's 'P' being mistaken for its 'PP'

PayPal has filed a lawsuit against streaming music service Pandora, alleging that the latter's stylised single “P” logo is so similar to the payment company's “PP” logo that it's designed to get punters confusing the two. In a brief filed last week in the United States District Court, PayPal argues that “Pandora’s recent …

  1. Notas Badoff

    P-p-p-p-pull my finger

    Oh c'mon, get three font designers together with a hip-hop artist and they'll shred this argument to pieces with a catchy rap diss to boot. The only similarity I can see is the near match in color. And that just says it doesn't have to be the color green - blue is a color made for lawyers! (Apologies to those who remember the Samsung S3 launch)

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Can I get the logo in cornflower blue?

  3. Brenda McViking

    I despair for the human race...

    I went to pay for my pet rock on ebay and I accidently ended up listening to Kanye West because I was confused, and the music was so dreadful that I was forced to sue.

    I mean seriously, can we not just invite these plaintiffs and all the lawyers to court (actually a 400ft deep molten-tar pit with the word "court" above it - trust me, it'll fool them) so that they can perform their legal flatulence without actually dragging down the general intelligence of the world's population any further? BTW, I'd also have no qualms if Kanye also joined them...

    1. NonSSL-Login

      Re: I despair for the human race...

      You sir have won the internet today! Thanks for the laugh :)

      Maybe the Pandora Patcher which makes Pandora work in the UK again, allows you to download the track when clicking the thumbs up button and other goodies would be more likely to fall for the double P logo issue.

      PayPal are taking the Pish.

  4. Brian Miller

    Tingleize it!

    This is so ready-made for Tingleization! Since the Tingler is kind of offline, I'll have to take a crack at the headline: "PayPal peevishly peed at Pandora's purple P"

    1. Swarthy

      Re: Tingleize it!

      Your attempt at Tingelization is a bit light in the saurian Sodomy department. But it is better than I could do.

  5. BongoJoe

    For once I am with the plaintiffs

    As title.

    At first glance it could easily be assumed that that Pandora is a part of the PayPal empire. In fact, it would take any amount of digging around to realise that it wasn't.

    This, to me, looks a lazy way to take a ride hitching on someone else's coat tails. Now, normally I detest companies who get involved in these legal fisticuffs but, here, PayPal needs to do this.

    I don't know which marketing brand twonk was responsible but like all marketing brand twonks they should be placed on the B Ark right now. I think North Korea is making a few at the moment.

    1. Oengus

      Re: For once I am with the plaintiffs

      all marketing brand twonks they should be placed on the B Ark right now

      You don't want them on the B ark. Remember it was the B ark that survived. They need to be left behind to die painfully with everyone else.

      1. Anonymous Coward Silver badge

        Re: For once I am with the plaintiffs

        "Remember it was the B ark that survived. They need to be left behind to die painfully with everyone else."

        I think someone misunderstood the story. Those people were put on the arks to get rid of them, based on a made-up story that the planet was going to be destroyed. Once they were off-planet, everyone else carried on much happier.

        1. Seajay

          Re: For once I am with the plaintiffs

          ...until the planet was wiped out by a disease from a dirty telephone (having sent the telephone sanitisers off world on the B Ark). So in truth, it was only those on the B Ark that survived after all!

        2. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

          Re: H2G2 B-Ark

          "I think someone misunderstood the story."

          Yup. And I hate to have to tell you, but it's you.

    2. Criminny Rickets

      Re: For once I am with the plaintiffs

      At first I agreed with you, but then I thought about it.

      Yes, at first glance they do look similar, but at second glance, the P is both a different shape and font, and the colour of blue is a different shade.

      So Paypal is saying that no other company that start with "P" can use a blue P as part of their logo, even if it is a different looking P and a different shade of blue.

      Combine that with the fact that one company is a payment company and the other is a music streaming company, leaves one hard pressed to see how any logical person can confuse the two companies or think they are related in any way.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: For once I am with the plaintiffs

        Ask a lawyer, like I once did: it's not the differences that matter, it's the similarities. Ie, if at first glance a member of the public can find them similar (hey - like you just did!), then they're likely to be in hot water.

        1. Will 28

          Re: For once I am with the plaintiffs

          No, I am friends with a trademarks and patent lawyer, and we have spoken about such cases on a few occasions. While initial perception might hold some sway, the criteria applied is much less subjective. From what I remember from our discussions, I would suggest that the following make the case for PayPal unviable (this is me, not the lawyer, talking. I'm just applying similar rules that he applied in other similar discussions):

          1) The angle of the letter is different, this makes the comparison very hard to relate as the angle is one of the distinguishing things about the logo.

          2) The length of the stalk before the bulk of the P begins is significantly shorter for the Pandora logo. Given this is a defining point about the letter, that makes it substantially different design.

          3) The bevelling around the corners of the P is different, on the PayPal logo all edges are bevelled, including the underedge where the body meets the stalk. On the Pandora logo only the bottom right corner of the stalk is bevelled.

          4) The colour is different. You cannot trademark "Blue", it doesn't match either shade of the Ps on the PayPal logo.

          5) The body of the P is bigger. Obviously coupled to the length of the stalk, but also given significant weight in the distinctiveness of the logo.

          6) There's only 1 ******* P! It's a pretty significant difference in the logo.

          I think Paypal are trolling here, possibly hoping to scare them off before they attempt to fight in court, as I'd happily bet money that if they fight this in court PayPal will lose.

  6. Phil Kingston

    If PP thinks their customers will be confused between a music streaming service and their own financial offerings, that says a lot about how stupid PP thinks their customers are.

    1. BongoJoe

      Phil, my point above is the opposite.

      PayPal may consider that Pandora's customers will think that the streaming company is associated with the bank.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        So a small proportion of Paypal users will end up listening to music and a small proportion of people looking for music will end up sending money.

        Swings and roundabouts, let it go Paypal.

    2. Peter Ford

      I suspect PayPal have plenty of evidence to show exactly how stupid their customers are.

  7. frank ly

    "... the increasingly popular PayPal Logo ..."

    I've been printing the PayPal logo onto T-shirts and selling them from my car at the local Saturday market. They're selling like hot cakes.

  8. caffeine addict

    Meh - it is a bit similar in that colour, but not enough to get all legal about. Unless that's a longstanding Pandora colour, just shift it to purple and tell PayPal to go away.

    ( I vaguely remember Pandora. It used to be a nice way to discover music until they locked out everyone who wasn't American... )

  9. mark l 2 Silver badge

    I hadn't consciously realised that was the Paypal logo, so i doubt i would confuse the two brands, although I didn't know what Pandora was - I thought they made jewelry until i read this article.

    The infilled letter P and the colour are pretty similar though.

    1. The First Dave

      I thought it was the Pay Point logo until I checked - theirs is a _little_ different, but since they are in the same industry...

      1. Criminny Rickets

        since they are in the same industry...

        @ The First Dave

        One is a payment processing company and the other is a music streaming company. How is that the same industry?

  10. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    Sometimes I just wish courts would fine plaintiffs for contempt of court by insulting its intelligence.

    1. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

      Now this would be a wothy cause for a petition or something like that.

      Honestly, I would vote for any political platform proposing this. Including the ones I don't even want to think about.

  11. Doogie Howser MD

    Watch out Richard!

    The Pied Piper guys must be shitting themselves!

  12. Named coward

    The Pandora one doesn't have rounded corners on the left edge so it should be ok...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "The Pandora one doesn't have rounded corners on the left edge so it should be ok..."

      It's not Apple though it's Paypal.

  13. M7S

    Another PP logo in use

    There's a schoolboy joke to be made here. I shall rise above that as this is a serious publication.

  14. The Nazz

    Pandora's box?

    Just stick a stylized depiction of a fanny* in the centre of Pandora's P and have done with it.

    * No, not Blair/Brown/Farron. God no.

  15. MJI Silver badge

    Actually seems a valid moan

    FIlled in, similar colour.

    Lot more similarities than some which have been moaned at.

    I suppose Gearbox sued them for trying a Vault symbol and the other Pandora when they tried pinching theirs.

  16. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

    Maybe it's beacause I've got a bit of a migraine today, but I must confess I had a rare "kill them all and let God sort them out" moment just now.

    1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

      Maybe it's beacause I've got a bit of a migraine today, but I must confess I had a rare "kill them all and let God sort them out" moment just now.

      Not a bad attitude to "Brand Designers". I'm convinced that there a several circles of Hades reserved for them.

      And my migraines make me a tad tetchy too. Until the "ahh, I don't feel anything" tablets kick in. At which point I become a convincing imitation of a politician. Except for the lying, negotiable ethics and morals and general minkery[1].

      [1] I was going to use "weaselry" but decided that I stoatally like weasels. And squee about pine martens. I'm ambivalent on polecats though.

  17. Anonymous Coward

    Flog them!

    With all the myths, iconography and meanings behind the name Pandora, all they could think of was a blue P???

    1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

      Re: Flog them!

      With all the myths, iconography and meanings behind the name Pandora, all they could think of was a blue P?

      I suspect they probably wanted to downplay *most* of the aspects of Pandora..

    2. MJI Silver badge

      Re: Flog them!

      Lots I can think of

      Overpriced Jewellery, Goooogle obsessed with them

      An EM2 electric loco, built in 1950s, sold to the Dutch

      Adrian Moles Crush

      A very hostile planet, full of vaults

      A moon around Saturn

      A planet inhabited by giant Smurfs

      A box

      A lovely Inn in Cornwall

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "PayPal's complaint cites Tweets commenting on the similarity between the two logos as evidence of “the impact on their user experience since the launch of the Pandora Logo last fall.”

    So the entire legal case is based upon some TWEETS!!!


    Tenuous at best, utter bollocks at worst

    Paypal, the bank that doesn't have to comply with the all rules and regulations all other banks do!

    Fuck Paypal.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      "So the entire legal case is based upon some TWEETS!!!"

      Given the whole actual USA government position is based on tweets, it looks to me a solid foundation.

  19. adam payne

    "Our dynamic brand is composed of form, color and pattern, which we implemented into the new P icon and serves as your portal into the unique and diverse range of music you love."

    I have no idea what they is supposed to mean either. I can only assume it's a arty-farty way of saying we took the first letter of our company name and coloured it blue.

    "As a streaming music service known mostly for its free-to-consumers version, Pandora has no obvious path to profitability. It also faces overwhelming competition from Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, and other successful streaming platforms. It was against this backdrop that 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."

    How can you mixed these logos up? The colour looks similar but that's it, why shouldn't Pandora have a P as the logo? Why should PayPal still be using their crap logo? Why would a blue P enable Pandora them to catch up on the competition?

    1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

      "Our dynamic brand is composed of form, color and pattern

      As does evry other brand image out there..

      Jus' sayin'.

  20. earl grey

    paypal - avoid at all costs

    pandora = simply don't care about

  21. Tikimon

    You don't own all blue P's, ya jerks

    It's bloody difficult to do anything totally original. One can create it out of the blue but someone else may have also. We only have a couple dozen Latin characters to share among us and a handful of discernible colors. I suspect many logos exist around the world composed of a single blue P. We can't allow companies to claim any and all possible variations on a simple theme. Frickin' Apple thinks they own ANY fruit logo in any color.

    PayPal compared to Pandora:

    Slanted vs vertical

    Rounded corners vs sharp

    Double letter with overlap vs single

    Two-color vs single color

    There's four major differences and PayPal should shut the hell up.

  22. Bucky 2

    Nobody who knew one of the logos, but not the other, would confuse the unknown logo with the known logo (absent a profound disability).

    So the suit is obviously about something else. There's some kind of corporate politicking at play.

    On the other hand, I said similar things about the intelligence of the general public during the last election. So maybe PayPal's right. Maybe normal people can't tell the difference.

    1. Phil Kingston

      "So the suit is obviously about something else."

      I'd wager the something else would be "lawyers lining their own pockets".

  23. Sagitarius333

    Are we living in a world of grown-ups or is it Kindergarten ?

  24. OffBeatMammal

    New Pandora logo is horrible

    Personally I hate the new Pandora logo. So much so that while it used to be the first music app in that folder on my android phone (so became the groups primary icon) I moved it to second place so I didn't have to look at it all the time. The result is I'm using Pandora a lot less and Spotify more. I did submit a customer support request back when they made the change to undo it!

  25. Swiss Anton

    P is for PayPoint

    Years before PayPal became a thing I used to live in a flat with a pre-payment meter. I could pay for my electricity at any establishment that displayed the PayPoint logo.

    Have PayPal copied PayPoint's P? One of their's is practically the same colour as PayPoints's Ps. They're names sound similar and they are both in the payments industry. I for one could easily be confused.

    It seems to me PayPoint should have a word with their lawyers - after all, their lawyers ought to be qualified P takers.

    1. Swiss Anton

      Re: P is for PayPoint

      I know,

      1 Their, not They're.

      2 Their, not They're.

      3 Their, not They're.


      100 Their, not They're.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: P is for PayPoint

        Their, not They're.

        Even when it's spelled wrong, it's obvious what it's meant to mean.

        Move along now and do something useful.

      2. the spectacularly refined chap

        Re: P is for PayPoint

        Be careful when being pedantic because there is always the risk of coming across as a self important knob if it is yourself in the wrong.

        It is correct if deconstructed as a three clause sentence rather than two, i.e. They're names, sound similar, and they are both in the payments industry. Since that is the only correct way to parse that sentence it's you that can't read, not the poster that can't write.

    2. not.known@this.address

      Re: P is for PayPoint

      "They are names sound similar" is only a "that" away from being good English phrasing and I've seen far worse abuses of the language in bestselling fiction...

      What's the opposite of a 'Pedantic Grammar Nazi'?

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