According to The Oklahoman, Hinder are suing former vocalist Austin Winkler, due to the singer using the band’s trademark to promote his solo career. The lawsuit says he violated an agreement between him and the band, which stated he could only go by “Austin Winkler, formerly of Hinder” if the name in promotional materials, is not bigger or more prominent than his actual name. The band are seeking “all gains, profits and advantages realized from [Winkler’s] infringing.”
Hinder’s attorney Blake Johnson commented:
“Hinder has no ill will toward Mr. Winkler and would have much preferred to privately resolve this matter. Mr. Winkler, however, was apparently uninterested in such a solution. Though they’ve now been forced to seek legal redress, the band is less interested in a monetary reward and more interested in protecting Hinder’s valuable intellectual property and its brand and reputation.
“The members of Hinder simply cannot abide another musician making reckless use of the name and trademark they’ve worked for over a decade to make meaningful and distinct.”
Winkler left Hinder in 2013 due to medical and emotional problems, and the lawsuit said the band’s Leaving Member Agreement gives him “no rights in the (trademark), or to promotional use of the name Hinder” and that he agreed to a “very limited license for use of the mark under certain express restrictions.” It goes on to say Winkler is infringing on the trademark “by falsely suggesting Winkler’s continued affiliation with or endorsement by Hinder in ways likely to cause consumer confusion.”