Former name: World Wrestling Federation
Year changed: 2001
The popular entertainment company once known as the World Wrestling Federation, or WWF, had to change its name for a much different reason — trademark violation. Very few multimillion dollar companies come across such a problem. But World Wildlife Fund for Nature, a global conservation organization founded in 1961 that carries the initials WWF, sued the entertainment group in 2000 and won. A British judge ruled in 1994 that the initials belonged solely to the conservation group, but the organization now known as the WWE, or World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. (NYSE: WWE), continued to use the initials through 2002. That is when the United Kingdom’s Court of Appeals upheld a 2001 ruling that the corporation had been in violation of the 1994 settlement. The WWF changed its name and abbreviation, and continues to be extremely popular as the WWE.
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