UPDATED 9/15/09. See below.
Don’t think you can call your place “Nicky’s In-N-Out” and include a certain familiar-looking big yellow arrow in your logo and get away with it. In-N-Out — the beloved California burger chain — has settled a trademark lawsuit against a Chicagoland copycat gyro joint.
Taking a page out of Monster Cable’s playbook, Abercrombie & Fitch has threatened to sue merchants in Hollister, California who sell clothes bearing their town’s name. A&F claims that local merchants putting “Hollister” on their clothes will confuse notoriously inept surfers who can’t distinguish between a town and A&F’s Hollister Co. line. So what happens if the locals defy the upscale bully? According to David Cupps, Abercrombie’s general counsel and harasser-in-chief, “If they try, they would get a call and much more.”
A well-respected lawyer has a simple message for corporations: stop suing disgruntled customers who start websites to air their grievances. Though William Pecau of Steptoe & Johnson thinks that online gripers are “self-righteous narcissists with time on their hands,” he also realizes that “shutting down a gripe site generally is not easy, often cannot be done, and often is counterproductive.” Pecau goes on to explain exactly why most online gripers are safe from over-hyped takedown notices…
Monster Cable has decided to stop pursuing a trademark infringement against Monster Mini Golf. Judging by the post-settlement letter Noel sent the MiniGolf people, it seems that after both parties kicked their lawyers out of the room and talk directly, they were able to come to an amicable solution. Monster Cable will stop opposing the MiniGolf trademark and will cover MonsterMini Golf’s attorney fees. Noel’s letter, inside:
Pizza Hut is testing a new type of pizza in Florida and Texas. It’s called the ‘Natural Rustica’ and according to Brand Republic, the pizza features “sauces made from organic tomatoes and toppings without artificial preservatives. To enhance its premium credentials, the range is made from a multi-grain crust of traditional pizza dough and wholegrain infused with honey and olive oil.” Honey? Anyway, Domino’s must like this idea because they’ve trademarked the “Natural Rustica” name in the UK.
Attorneys Convince Monster That Consumers Can Tell The Difference Between A Deer Lick And An Audio Cable
According to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, attorneys filed a dismissal motion on behalf of Denco, an ethanol producer in Morris, Minn. that had been selling a product called “Monster Deer Block” since 2005. What were they trying to dismiss? A trademark lawsuit from Monster Cable, of course.
Pricey cable-maker Monster is worried you might confuse a haunted house-themed mini-golf course with its popular products, so they’re suing.
Apparently, T-Mobile has trademarked the color magenta and has even sued one other company over their use of the color in an advertisement. Um, what? In other news, we’re looking into trademarking kitty cats and science. [ColourLovers]
The El Segundo, Calif., toy maker sued Global China Networks LLC in federal court in Manhattan on Tuesday over its Web site, http://www.chinabarbie.com. Global is a limited liability company organized in Florida and maintains a post-office box in New York, according to the complaint.
American Airlines has sued Google over search terms that include words that American Airlines has trademarked. For example, if you search Google for “Aadvantage,” American Airline’s frequent flier program, Google will display a link to the program, but also show ads from competitors.
The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in New York, marked the breakdown of months of behind-the-scenes negotiations and prompted an angry response from the Red Cross.
More DoubleShot. Steven Roemerman was so upset by Starbucks suing his favorite local coffee shop that he decided to write them and complain. This is the form letter they sent him back:
You might remember DoubleShot Coffee owner Brian Franklin, who is being sued by Starbucks for trademark violation. They claim they “own” the name of the common industry term “doubleshot.” They also claim they own the trademarks on “coffee, the complete works of Herman Melville, your immortal soul and your wife’s loins.”