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Jan 4, 2014 09:24 AM

Starbucks gets a Little Comeuppance

Isn't satire, sarcasm and the Internet a great leveler when it comes to putting the humorless Goliath's in their place?

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  1. At the risk of seeming to be a big ole party pooper, I have to say that I thought the lawyer's letter was funnier than the response. I am usually not an apologist for mega corps but why shouldn't Starbucks enforce its trademarks?

    The beer guy admits upfront that they did, in fact, use the name (albeit misspelled) improperly.

    2 Replies
    1. re: tcamp

      I'll join you in the party pooper camp. I've learned a bit of trademark law over the years (and been both the sender and the recipient of various letters like this one), and my understanding is if you (the big bad corporate trademark owner) are ever in the position of pursuing a claim against a seriously harmful infringer, your case can be weakened if they're able to show that you were aware of other prior infringements and didn't do anything about it. Hence the warning shots fired at all infringers, no matter how seemingly insignificant.

      1. re: cookie monster

        Yep, if you want to maintain the trademark, you absolutely have to protect it against any and all improper uses, no matter their size. And I also think that even though this brewery is small, if I understand this correctly they intentionally used the name. To argue that Starbucks is a big bad meany for telling them not to infringe on the trademark, when the infringement was willful (if not malicious), is wrong IMO. I'm all for attacking the strongarm tactics of big business, but not when those tactics are legit.

    2. Interesting Servorg, so far the answer would be: No.

      This barkeep is no David Sedaris.