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Steve Aoki has issued a cease and desist letter to satirical news outlet Wunderground Music, which pokes fun at the dance music world, over their use of the DJ’s image in one of their gags. Wunderground founder Mikey Maguire has taken to the site to share his tongue-in-cheek response to Aoki’s legal team.
The gag that so incensed Aoki and his Beverly Hills legal team stems from Wunderground’s recent crowdfunding venture, which offered readers a raft of rewards for pledges. Among the rewards was a t-shirt bearing the words, “Ask Me About My S**t DJ Impression”, with Aoki’s image on the reverse side.
Maguire begins his open letter by insisting that he finds the firm’s claims that Wunderground damaged Aoki’s reputation laughable, before explaining, “We’re a satirical comedy website. I’m sure everybody in your office is much too busy reading the Wall Street Journal, chasing online comedians with cease & desist letters and eating Cronuts… to know what Wunderground is, so I’ll get your client to fill you in.”
Indeed, Aoki is more than aware of Wunderground. After the site posted an article in which Aoki “admitted” that he is “not an actual DJ”, Aoki took to his own site to “make sure my fans understand that this piece is in fact a parody”. Aoki added, “My crew and I had a good laugh about it.”
In his letter, Maguire goes to explain that the offending t-shirt never in fact existed. “Your letter refers many times to the ‘infringing tee’. Unfortunately, there is no ‘infringing tee’. There never was. The image you refer to is simply a digital mock-up.” The website founder repeatedly pokes fun at the cease and desist, at one point writing, “If a t-shirt doesn’t ever exist in the woods, can you sue me for selling it?”
Maguire sums up his view of the situation by writing, “Basically, Steve isn’t too keen on Wunderground because we like to poke fun at him every now and again. To be fair, we poke fun at pretty much every electronic music act… We’re an Electronic Music comedy site, it’s kinda what we do.”
This isn’t the first time one of Wunderground’s articles have gotten them in trouble with the law. In August 2013, Wunderground was issued with another cease and desist notice by lawyers acting on behalf of David Guetta, after the site issued a post in which they “claimed” Guetta suffers from a fear of dancing.