Drake Claims Royalty Rights for YOLO


Pop singer Drake popularized the term YOLO, an acronym for “you only live once” in his 2011 hit “The Motto.” Now he wants any store or merchandise producer to cut him into the profits for the clothes, hats, bags- you name it- emblazoned with the logo. On

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Christmas day, Drake uploaded two photos of merchandise from Macy’s and Walgreens bearing the abbreviation, noting in a caption that he should be receiving royalties for the term. His claim to it is from the lyrics, “Now she want a photo, you already know, though/You only live once: that’s the motto, YOLO.”

However, legally it is up in the air if Drake has any rights to the saying or its acronym. A post on Gawker says there are trademark applications numbering over 100 for the phrase, and pop culture sources attribute YOLO to another, much earlier source. KnowYourMeme.com says that Adam Mesh of the reality show Average Joe first used the term in 2004, and subsequently started his own clothing line sporting the logo. Yet Mesh gave it a slightly different definition. While Drake uses YOLO as a term to justify reckless behavior, Mesh meant it as a motivation to seize the day, and tweeted that he wanted to motivate people to live their lives to the fullest. Mesh hopes to move on from the phase, while Drake seems dedicated to trying to profit from it.

Source courtesy of The Huffington Post. Image courtesy of The Salon.