A New York singer-songwriter long dubbed the "Queen of Christmas" has filed a lawsuit contesting Mariah Carey's application to trademark that and three related terms.
Elizabeth Chan, who for a decade has recorded and released albums of holiday music and has been referred to as the Queen of Christmas by The New Yorker magazine and the entertainment-news program "All Access," filed a notice of opposition at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Thursday. The filing, obtained by Newsday, said Carey's California-based company Lotion LLC had applied in March "to register and control four 'Queen of Christmas'-related trademarks: 'Princess Christmas,' 'Christmas Princess,' 'QOC' (the acronym for Queen of Christmas), and the subject of this opposition, 'Queen of Christmas.' "
"The words 'Queen of Christmas' should not be owned or controlled by Lotion LLC," the suit states, "particularly since Ms. Carey herself has candidly admitted" in a British radio show this past December that she does not "consider myself that. … To me, Mary [the mother of Jesus] is the Queen of Christmas."
The filing goes on to note Chan "has used the brand 'Queen of Christmas' in United States commerce in connection with, among other various goods and services, the sale and licensing of music, books and entertainment services over the last decade."
"I feel very strongly that no one person should hold onto anything around Christmas or monopolize it in the way that Mariah seeks to in perpetuity," Chan, 42, told Variety in a story published Monday. "Christmas is for everyone. It's meant to be shared; it's not meant to be owned. … She's trying to trademark this in every imaginable way — clothing, liquor products, masks, dog collars. …"
"It's classic trademark bullying," said Chan's pro bono attorney, Louis W. Tompros, to Variety. "What they're trying to say is we want a monopoly over a queen of Christmas in these 16 different classes of goods and hundreds and hundreds of different kinds of products."
Additionally, Rock & Roll Hall of Famer Darlene Love — whose "Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)" from producer Phil Spector's classic 1963 multi-artist compilation "A Christmas Gift for You" is a holiday staple — weighed in on Facebook Monday.
"Is it true that Mariah Carey trade marked 'Queen of Christmas'? What does that mean that I can't use that title? David Letterman officially declared me the Queen of Christmas 29 years ago, a year before she released 'All I Want for Christmas Is You,' " she posted.
Letterman had Love perform her holiday hit annually on his late-night show from 1986 to 2014.
"At 81 years of age I'm NOT changing anything," Love continued. "I've been in the business for 52 years, have earned it and can still hit those notes! If Mariah has a problem call David or my lawyer!!"
After some Carey fans trolled Love in response, posting insults and derogatory terms, Love added Tuesday, "I'm noticing all these negative comments from Mariah Carey's loyal camp." Lauding Carey as "a brilliant songwriter and singer," she went on to list many singers who could be called Queen of Christmas, adding, "If Mariah wants to take that away from me then so be it! I'll survive!"
A representative for Carey, who was born in Huntington and raised there and in Melville, Northport and Greenlawn, did not respond to a Newsday request for comment.
Carey, 53, released her perennial hit "All I Want for Christmas Is You" in 1994. Throughout her career she has had holiday concert tours and residences, and has released holiday-themed TV specials, books and other projects.