The Converse Chuck Taylor All Star is arguably the most iconic sneaker design of all time, and consequently it’s had more than its share of knockoffs over the years. And Converse is apparently fed up with low-rent sneakersmiths at retailers like Wal-Mart and Target biting their style, because they’ve filed 22 separate lawsuits against 31 different companies for infringing on their trademarks.
Trademark infringement is a tricky thing to prove in the fashion world, but Converse is hoping that many of their signature design elements, like rubber toe toppers and black stripes, are distinctive enough to warrant the cessation of obvious Chuck Taylor knockoffs from other companies. That being the company’s primary goal, they’ve also filed a separate complaint with the International Trade Commission, which could stop “counterfeit” shoes from being allowed into the country.
The whole process could take years, but for many Converse fans it’s a step in the right direction for a brand that’s been disappointing some since its acquisition by Nike back in 2003. You can read a report from The New York Times on Converse’s new trademark protection initiatives here. And if you collect off-brand Chuck Taylor knockoffs, now might be the time to start stocking up.