Probably the last place we’d expect Nipsey Hussle’s family to be having legal trouble from would be the Crips — but the gang, under their LLC, is moving forward with their attempts to trademark and profit from the phrase ‘The Marathon Continues,’ a term popularized by the late rapper and associated with several of his works and businesses.
BOSSIP obtained a copy of the Crips LLC’s response to opposition to their trademark application filed by Nip’s brother Samiel Asghedom, aka Blacc Sam. In their responses, Crips LLC admit to social media communications between the company’s Principal Tia Hollis and Nipsey’s sister Samantha, but say they should be able to use and register a trademark the phrase, despite Nipsey’s use of it during his career. Their response: “The Crips organization has long used the phrase ‘The Marathon Continues’ as our ideology slogan in the past. Ermias, became a well-known Crip and the phrase became popularized.”
The organization further claims that their decision to pursue the trademark so soon after Nipsey’s death (they literally filed on April 1, 2019, the DAY AFTER he died) was to protect the organization’s intellectual property…
Crips LLC’s decision to file a U.S. trademark application was inspired by the right to protect our intellectual property against unauthorized use through registration. Ermias was and still is the most famous Crip. With his death, the Crips lost the person who most popularized this slogan and a vacuum was created that needed to be filled.
If you heard the Crips apologized and backed off their pursuit of trademarking “The Marathon Continues” last year, when The Blast reported about it then all this probably sounds super confusing. The latest round of court documents shed a little light on that as well.
The Blast cited William King Hollis as the corporate communications director for the Crips LLC last summer as saying “We are deeply sorry for any disruptions and melee that the trademark acquisition may have caused to his family, friends and fans.” Hollis also claimed he’d been in contact with Nipsey before his death and the two agreed to work on a mutual collaboration around the phrase.
In the court documents obtained by BOSSIP this week, Crips LLC claim that William King Hollis is the stepson of their Principal, Tia Hollis, however they say he is not affiliated in any way with their organization. In other words, the gloves are off, along with the apology and any promise to drop the trademark claim.
This is sounding all bad right now — but it seems like Nipsey’s family haven’t let up either and are being extremely vigilant about their dispute.
Do you think it’s foul that Crips LLC continue to try to pursue a trademark for “The Marathon Continues” when Nipsey’s family has made it clear they have every intention to keep his legacy alive using that very phrase?
The other part that’s mind boggling is the denials to every having knowledge of Nipsey or Blacc Sam using the phrase in commerce. Do you think MOST of the public associates the term almost exclusively with Nipsey and his family and businesses?