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Clear Channel To AGM: Kiss Off

Clear Channel and American General Media appeared before the 9th U.S. Circuit Court in Los Angeles May 14 in a case that pits two Bakersfield, Calif. stations-AGM’s KISV 94.1 and Clear Channel’s KKXX-in a fight over which station can legally use the moniker “Kiss.”

Clear Channel won a preliminary injunction precluding American General Media from using the Kiss slogan in Bakersfield, and the order denied AGM’s motion to stop Clear Channel and subsidiary City Casters from using the Kiss slogan on its station in Bakersfield. The lawsuit at issue was originally filed by City Casters in late August 2000. City Casters owns the federal registration for the moniker Kiss-FM, as well as a logo that includes a pair of lips emblazoned with the words Kiss-FM.

Jeffrey Wexler, one of the two attorneys from the Los Angeles firm of Luce, Forward, Hamilton, and Scripps representing KISV, said, “The case is not over on the merits. This is only one lawsuit. Clear Channel has said that they’ve got an intent to build a national Kiss brand and they now have around 40 stations operating around the country with the Kiss name, 30 or so of which they’ve launched in the last year or so.”

Clear Channel has had similar disputes in other markets such as Chicago, Las Vegas, and Palm Springs. Calls to Clear Channel seeking comment were not immediately returned.  

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