The music education charity asked Simon Cowell’s production company Syco to change the name of the girl band, which has progressed through to the third week of the live shows.
Producers of the ITV show say they were aware of the music charity but had believed there was no conflict of interest between it and the band. The girls came up with the name by themselves when they were individually asked to form a group after being unsuccessful in the solo category.
The charity then sent an open letter to Cowell on Facebook, claiming that Syco had applied to use the trademark name when they were “fully aware” it was already trademarked by the charity.
“Rather than seeking any discussion with the charity, considering any of the moral implications of their actions, or checking with the charity whether the pursuit of an exclusive trademark might have a negative impact on the activities of the charity, Simco and their legal representatives apparently sought a way to use the law to circumvent the trademark of the charity,” chief executive Mark Davyd wrote.
He said it was forced to take legal action so that it can “continue to exist and offer opportunities to young people to create and perform their own music”.
Set up in 1999, Rhythmix runs programmes in the south east to support and challenge vulnerable young people express their creativity. It also manages a MusicLeader programme to improve the skills of musicians working with young people.
Meanwhile, Jesy, Perrie, Leigh-Anne and Jade will announced their new name soon. It could be as soon as this coming Saturday, when the band will sing a Halloween-themed song to compete for their chance to progress through the competition.