Radio show King of Pop Studio Brussel has been summoned from the US to change names. The title of the quiz show is identical to the nickname of the deceased pop star Michael Jackson, lawyers write in a letter to the Belgian broadcaster VRT.
The letter was drawn up on behalf of the heirs of the American artist. “The lawyers have to supervise the name Michael Jackson and apparently the name King of Pop also belongs to them,” said show host Stijn Van de Voorde on the radio station this morning.
According to the VRT, a lawsuit has not been filed immediately. Such a procedure could follow if the warning is ignored. The broadcaster’s legal department is investigating the matter.
The radio program has been aired for three seasons. On Sunday mornings, contestants answer questions about music and compete for the title of King or Queen of Pop. But according to the team of lawyers, that name is subject to copyright. “I think it’s quite exaggerated, because you can of course also like other people King of Pop,” said presenter Van de Voorde.
Jackson has applied for and received patents on several things. Likewise, the shoes he used in the video clip of Smooth Criminal are patented. Those shoes gave the illusion that the pop star could lean further forward without falling over than is possible.
The design of these shoes is recorded under the company name Triumph International. According to Belgian media, that company is also responsible for managing the Michael Jackson merchandise. Despite the singer’s death in 2009, his heirs still receive tens of millions of dollars annually from the sale of, for example, albums.
The pop star is one of the best-selling artists of all time. But his name has also been associated with pedophilia in recent years.
Some radio stations have stopped playing his music since the documentary came out Leaving Neverland in 2019. In it, two men state that they were repeatedly sexually abused by Jackson as children. The singer has always denied such allegations.