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Barack and Michelle Obama just got some bad news this week when they were accused of “deplorable behavior” by a Los Angeles entertainment at...

Barack And Michelle Obama Accused Of Unethical Actions In Trademark Dispute – Really ‘Deplorable Behavior’

Barack and Michelle Obama just got some bad news this week when they were accused of “deplorable behavior” by a Los Angeles entertainment attorney for filing a “meritless petition”in an ongoing trademark dispute over the name of their production company, Higher Ground Productions.

Fox News reported this came after the Obamas filed a petition to cancel the trademark of an e-book publishing company called Higher Ground Enterprises, much to the dismay of the publishing company.

“This is really deplorable behavior. I hope that the Obamas realize that these actions are not consistent with the values they preach and that they instruct their attorneys to immediately dismiss the petition,” attorney Larry Zerner said in a statement. He added that the “Obamas have known for almost a year” that their Higher Ground Productions trademark application was rejected by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office because it was too similar to his client’s Higher Ground Enterprises.

“Instead of simply picking another name, the Obamas’ lawyers have now filed a meritless petition to cancel my client’s trademark so they can take it for themselves,” said Zerner.

Zerner went on to say that his client’s motives are “not political” and Higher Ground Enterprises simply wants to keep its name and avoid confusion.

The Hollywood Reporter’s reporter Eriq Gardner pointed out that Michelle Obama famously claimed, “When they go low, we go high,” before taking a jab at the former first couple.

“Going high evidently includes a trademark fight,” Gardner wrote.

A press release from Netflix stated that Barack and Michelle started Higher Ground in the hopes of producing a diverse mix of content, including a scripted series, an unscripted series, a docuseries, as well as documentaries and features. The production company has announced seven projects so far this year, both films and series, that Barack said would entertain but also “educate, connect and inspire us all.”

The Obamas said in a letter to the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office that their production company wouldn’t be mistaken for an e-book publisher despite the similar name.

“[T]he consumers of ‘media production services’ covered by the Application are likely to be highly sophisticated,” the Obamas’ team wrote. “Media production services are generally offered not to individual consumers but to commercial entities and professionals in their field.”

“Indeed, Applicant has entered a deal with Netflix in connection with its media production services,” their letter continued. “Such customers, whether multi-billion-dollar media companies or smaller commercial entities in need of media production services, will exercise the height of care in selecting a media production company and are highly unlikely to be confused by a photographer or e-book publisher — particularly when the other party uses a distinguishable mark.”

However, the U.S. Trademark Office decided that the two companies were too similar so the petition to cancel was filed.

“In a petition to cancel, the Obamas essentially allege that [Higher Ground Enterprises boss Hanisya] Massey doesn’t deserve a trademark because ‘Higher Ground Enterprises’ wasn’t actually in use at the time of its 2016 registration,” Gardner wrote. “Her trademark is in Class 41, which includes entertainment services.”

The Obamas have yet to comment on the situation.