Photo: PR Times

Will Twitter’s rebranding result in poaching ‘X Japan’ name? Legendary musician Yoshiki weighs in

By Casey Baseel, SoraNews24

Like most of the rest of the world, Japan was equal parts surprised and baffled at the recent Twitter rebranding. Changing the name of the social media platform from the globally recognized Twitter to the non-descript and hard-to-differentiate “X,” and ditching the familiar blue bird logo in the process, is an especially questionable move for the Japanese market, seeing as how the country loves cute mascot characters.

That’s not the only thing that has many people in Japan questioning the renaming, either. Usually, the Japanese branches of international organizations get called by the parent company’s name plus “Japan,” which works just fine if people are talking about, say, “Starbucks Japan,” “McDonald’s Japan,” or, up until now, “Twitter Japan.”

But with Twitter now calling itself X, that would make its Japanese division “X Japan”…which is already the name of one of Japan’s most legendary rock bands.

▼ You’d be hard-pressed to find a Japanese person under the age of 50 who doesn’t immediately recognize X Japan’s “Forever Love.”

With the swift and forceful way in which Twitter was renamed, many fans of X Japan began wondering if the social media platform would now be making an ownership claim to the name. As the online chatter continued, though, a reassuring voice came into the discussion, none other than X Japan founder and front man Yoshiki.


“I think X Japan is already trademarked,” Yoshiki tweeted bilingually, in both Japanese and English. While he doesn’t mention whether or not the trademark is registered outside Japan as well, it seems like it would at least be enough to keep Twitter/X from calling itself “X Japan” within Japan, which is really the only place where the social media platform would want to call itself that.

X Japan fans responded with a collective sigh of relief, plus response tweets including:

“When I hear ‘X Japan,’ Yoshiki’s X Japan is the only one I think of!”

“Number-one band was the first to grab the name.”

“Locking down that trademark early. That’s Yoshiki for you!”

“Yoshiki is just the best.”

“This makes you wonder is Musk and his lawyers just didn’t bother to check if ‘X Japan’ was available as a name or not.”

“Maybe they’ll try to call it ‘X with Japan.’”

“Or ‘X Nippon.’”

“Haha they could go with ‘Y Japan.’”

It’s unclear whether or not the band’s copyright would be enough to keep Twitter from calling itself simply “X” within Japan, but at the very least it looks like the social media company renaming itself as “X Japan” isn’t an option.

Source: Twitter/@YoshikiOfficial

Read more stories from SoraNews24.

-- X Japan’s Yoshiki apologizes for donating “only” 10 million yen after hometown is hit by typhoon

-- Travis Japan members compete with the best dancers in Japan at Red Bull’s national dance finals

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It'd be like Monster Energy drink suing everyone up and down for using "monster" in their names. Like they literally sued Capcom for using monster in Monster Hunter and Nintendo, along with other videogame companies and movies. Crazy.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Simple answer 'No.' They are not as famous as Japan likes to make them out to be, and it is not copyrighted.

Another publicized failure by Elon.

Mark Zuckerberg and Meta already on the rights to the 'X' logo related to an app.

Meta already appears to hold the rights to 'X.' It could make Twitter's rebrand complicated.

You cannot make a superapp named 'X' (WeChat clone) to steal and control everyone's personal information when another app (Meta) already own's the name. You just keep winning (sarcasm)!

8 ( +9 / -1 )

The world is truly in an Identity Crisis. Following this story because it's time to test the limits of Intellectual Property.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

It's pretty ridiculous that any single company could be able to trademark a single letter of the alphabet to begin with. Perhaps trademarks should be limited to phrases or sentences.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

I could understand if Elon did something like Twitter X and Tessla X to match his Space X, but changing a successful brand image to just X doesn't make sense. I don't think Twitter's problems had anything to do with its name and logo. Love the bird and name as a brand.

As far as intellectual property rights go, this case will be interesting to follow.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

XJapan is different than X Japan. That space might be legally binding. I really don't know....

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Maybe X twits Japan

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Legendary musician

Wow, the bar for "legendary" is pretty low these days.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

Single-letters “a” to “z” are referred to as ‘nondescript marks’

Lacking any full meaning of a recognizable distinctive character, essential to let them function as trademark.

Either Yoshiki or Musk would need to clearly define characteristics of  goods or services.

Maybe XJAPAN conjoined could registered as a trademark,

3 ( +3 / -0 )

So Twitter videos will become xvideos ?

4 ( +4 / -0 )


Let’s get some facts down. X JAPAN are called that because they called themselves X without checking if someone else was using the name. A group in America already was so they were forced to change their name to X JAPAN

What’s your point? He changed it, after all, and so Elon should not consider X JAPAN and/or change it to something else. Or did you think your comment would justify Elon using “X Japan”?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Musk being a right wing fascist, should have chosen a Z

1 ( +4 / -3 )

What about X hamster or any other porn site with an X in it? I don’t think he’s thought this through!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

PaulToday  06:43 pm JST

Musk being a right wing fascist, should have chosen a Z

Did you come up with that yourself or are you jumping on the bandwagon?

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

It‘s simple:“First come, first serve!“

So I think the Band‘s name „X JAPAN“ is safe and can’t claimed by Elon Musk‘s „X/Twitter“.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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