Dyke karaoke contest Lesbian Idol has a new name, following a legal threat from the makers of the Channel Ten series Australian Idol.

Yvonne Hall, founder of the Dikes on Mikes Lesbian Idol competition, received legal papers from Grundy Television, the producers of Australian Idol, ordering her to drop Idol from the title.

We received a letter demanding we remove all advertising material, online and in print, which relates to the event so we’ve decided to cease using the -˜bleep’ word, Hall said.

They can do it because they’ve trademarked the name.

We’re just wondering why after two years of competition they are only now approaching us with their claim.

A Grundy Television spokesperson said the company did not wish to make any comment when contacted by Sydney Star Observer.

Hall said her lawyer felt reasonably comfortable about continuing use of the name but could not guarantee the outcome of a court case.

The case would probably rest on whether members of the public would think Lesbian Idol was associated with Australian Idol. Which is quite ridiculous. We are a community-based event and we don’t think anyone would think we are in any way connected with Channel Ten, Hall said.

Thank heavens they don’t own the L-word.

The only reason she could come up with for the intervention was that perhaps Grundy or Ten got wind of the fact there was interest in screening Lesbian Idol on television.

Hall described how when she was in Chicago for Windy City Gay Idol recently, she asked the promoters if they’d had any trouble using the I-word, and they hadn’t.

So it seemed reasonable for us to use the Idol word as well, she said.

The final heat of Dikes on Mikes takes place this Friday 25 November at @Newtown. The semi-final is 9 December and grand final is on 10 February 2006.

Hall said she would play around with new titles at this week’s event, with signs saying Lesbian ? and Lesbian bleep.

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