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X-Factor girl group to change name after online campaign

By | Published on Thursday 27 October 2011

The X-Factor

So, bosses of the ‘X-Factor’ aren’t complete bastards, who knew? Producers of the ITV show yesterday announced that they were changing the name of the girl group they manufactured for this year’s contest after a music charity pointed out it was itsname too.

As previously reported, the Rhythmix charity works with children who have been bereaved, who are disabled, or who have been sent to youth detention centres, using music as a method to aid personal and communicative development. Operating since 1999, it owns the trademark in the name in the educational space, though not in music.

When the organisation heard that ‘X-Factor’ bosses were using the same name for one of the groups on their TV show, and that the ‘X’ machine was planning on registering the name as a trademark in the music space, the charity reached out to the programme’s producers, expressing concern Team X’s plans would cause confusion with their organisation, and hinder their fund-raising activity, which includes staging music events and selling merchandise using the Rhythmix name.

Given that the ‘X-Factor’ girl group was created by the show – it didn’t come as a ready made outfit – and as, therefore, no actual investment had been made in the group’s name, the charity expected a positive reaction to its approach. But instead the charity was told it had a weak legal case, and would have to fight the ‘X’ machine in court for rights to the name, diverting funds from charitable initiatives.

Even when various media picked up on the story, and an organic online campaign calling on the Rhythmix girl group to change their name began to gain momentum, ‘X-Factor’ producers stood their ground. But yesterday, just hours after the charity’s CEO posted a public plea to Simon Cowell to step in and sort things out, the show’s bosses announced the girl group would, indeed, choose a new name.

In a short statement Team X said: “At the request of the charity Rhythmix, the members of the girl group Rhythmix have decided to change their name, a decision which has the support of [Simon Cowell’s company] Syco and [the show’s other producer, Fremantle’s] talkbackTHAMES. The group’s new name will be announced in due course”.

So look at that, a happy ending, who’d of thought it possible? Insiders say that the girl group, made up of Nikki, Sarah, Pattie, Charlie and Claire, might just go with their respective initials as a new name. No I made that up. I’ve no idea who the girl-group-formally-known-as-Rhythmix actually are. In fact I’ve never even seen an episode of ‘X-Factor’. Is that the one with dancing or the ice skating?

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