e dot dot dot
a mostly about the Internet blog by

July 2018
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
       


How A US Burger Chain Brought 'Ruby Tuesday' Full Circle Through Trademark Bullying

Furnished content.


Circles are so zen. So jedi. So the force. "The circle is now complete," Darth Vader says in A New Hope. Well, it turns out that the universe has a way of pulling this sort of dynamic out of the realm of the mystical and into the far more mundane realm of trademark bullying. You may be aware of the American burger chain Ruby Tuesday. The chain has locations all over the United States and internationally. Notably, the company's website lists no locations in Australia. This is notable because the American chain has for some reason decided to try to bully an Australian rock band, Ruby Tuesdays, into changing its name over trademark concerns.

Ruby Tuesday the restaurant has served Ruby Tuesdays the band with a letter outlining their intent to sue. It reads: “While many artists pay tribute to other artists through imitation, when it comes to imitating famous trademarks, only Ruby Tuesday is entitled to the goodwill of its mark.”The letter continues: “In fact, the knowing adoption of a mark intending to play off a well-established mark is among the most egregious of trademark violations, warranting courts to apply the harshest of consequences.”The corporation has demanded that the group change its name, close down its website, destroy all of its merch and pass on all of its profits as compensation.
So, a number of things should be immediately obvious here. First, these two organizations are not remotely in the same marketplace. Burgers and music acts offer no avenue for public confusion as to what the source of the prodct is. Second, for that and a myriad of other reasons, there is no potential for confusion here. The entire point of trademark law is to keep consumers informed as to the source and affiliations of a product. That is simply not in issue here. All of that is particularly so when you consider that Ruby Tuesday does not have any storefront locations in the entire country in which the band exists. We can just add here for context that this is a penniless hobby band that has very little notoriety, even in Australia.But back to the concept of this representing a circle. Our younger readers may not realize this, but the Ruby Tuesday restaurant chain has an ironic source for its name.
The restaurant's name was derived from The Rolling Stones song, "Ruby Tuesday", which was popular during the time of the first restaurant's inception. The name was suggested to founder Sandy Beall by Bob Hope.
"The circle is now complete." Yes, the restaurant yoinked the title of one of the most popular songs from one of the most popular rock bands ever for its name in the 1960s and then turned around and attempted to bully a little-known rock band out of that same name in the present. I'll give Ruby Tuesday credit here for the pure audacious irony of its tone-deaf attempt at legal asshatery.Zero credit is awarded, however, for having anything resembling a valid trademark claim.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:16am on 13-Jul-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



State Appeals Court Tosses Defamation Suit Against Lawyer Who Wrote About Teen Driver Who Injured His Client

Furnished content.


An interesting sidebar to a case we've written about previously has surfaced via the ever-attentive Eric Goldman. Last month we covered a lawsuit against Snapchat brought by the victims of an car accident. The victims claim Snapchat is at least partially responsible for the injuries inflicted on Karen Maynard. The driver of the other vehicle, Christal McGee, was allegedly driving at over 100 mph when she hit Maynard's vehicle. The suit also alleged -- based on passenger statements, accident reconstruction, and police reports -- McGee was using Snapchat's "Speed" filter when the accident occurred.The Georgia state appeals court allowed the case to proceed, but not on Section 230 grounds. It was remanded to the lower court to allow for more exploration of the issues at hand, noting that Section 230 likely does not apply to software created by Snapchat itself. Of course, dismissal may still be the outcome as it's going to be tough to prove Snapchat's creation of a filter was either negligence or contributory to the accident caused by McGee's unsafe driving.The sidebar is this: Christal McGee has racked up a loss in Georgia Appeals Court in a case tied to the accident she caused. McGee sued Michael Neff -- the Maynards' legal rep in the lawsuit against Snapchat -- for defamation. According to McGee, Neff's blog post detailing the Snapchat lawsuit was defamatory. The lower court allowed the case to proceed, slapping aside Neff's anti-SLAPP motion.The appeals court, however, finds [PDF] there was no defamation and certainly nothing written with actual malice. (Emphasis in the original.)

Neff argues that he acted in good faith at the time he published the article to his law firm’s website because he relied upon the police report, the report from the accident reconstructionist and the verified affidavit of Heather McCarty. This evidence was known to Neff prior to the publication of his article on April 26, 2016. In its ruling that “[t]here is evidence from which a jury could find that some of [the statements in the article] were false,” the trial court cited to affidavits signed after the publication of the article. This, and other evidence cited to by McGee that was not known to Neff until after the publication of the article, do not factor into his good faith at the time of publication.
McGee argued Neff's statements were malicious because the affidavits he used to write his article weren't signed at the point the post went live. The appeals court finds this does not make his use of the affidavits' contents malicious, especially since some of this testimony was already included in available police reports.
The only other evidence Neff had at the time he published his article were statements obtained by the police from the other passengers in McGee’s car. The statements in the police report by two of the passengers in McGee’s car did not deny McGee’s use of Snapchat. One of these statements was silent as to McGee’s speed, and the other stated that she had been traveling at 60-65 m.p.h. A third statement, by Heather McCarty, was signed and stated that McGee was going “a little over 110 m.p.h.” at the time of the accident.
The statements made by Neff about teens' use of Snapchat while driving (and, in particular, McGee's alleged use of Snapchat) were supported by outside statements. The lower court should not have declared these blog post assertions should be subjected to additional courtroom scrutiny before allowing a motion to dismiss.The court also notes the content of the blog post was of public interest. It dealt with teen driving, Snapchat use while driving, a just-filed lawsuit against the company, and, generally, the dangers of distracted driving. The mention of McGee's alleged careless driving was relevant to the lawsuit and the issues at hand. There was nothing defamatory about Neff's public discussion of these allegation, especially when supported by passenger statements to police and as-yet-unsigned affidavits.Adding it all up, the appeals court says there's no way McGee is likely to prevail on the merits of her allegations. The lawsuit is dismissed under Georgia's anti-SLAPP law, which means McGee will now likely to be on the hook for Neff's legal costs.

Permalink | Comments | Email This Story


Read more here

posted at: 12:16am on 13-Jul-2018
path: /Policy | permalink | edit (requires password)

0 comments, click here to add the first



July 2018
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
       







RSS (site)  RSS (path)

ATOM (site)  ATOM (path)

Categories
 - blog home

 - Announcements  (2)
 - Annoyances  (0)
 - Career_Advice  (1)
 - Domains  (0)
 - Downloads  (4)
 - Ecommerce  (2368)
 - Fitness  (0)
 - Home_and_Garden  (0)
     - Cooking  (0)
     - Tools  (0)
 - Humor  (1)
 - Notices  (0)
 - Observations  (1)
 - Oddities  (2)
 - Online_Marketing  (3559)
     - Affiliates  (1)
     - Merchants  (1)
 - Policy  (1485)
 - Programming  (0)
     - Browsers  (1)
     - DHTML  (0)
     - Javascript  (536)
     - PHP  (0)
     - PayPal  (1)
     - Perl  (37)
          - blosxom  (0)
     - Unidata_Universe  (22)
 - Random_Advice  (1)
 - Reading  (0)
     - Books  (0)
     - Ebooks  (1)
     - Magazines  (0)
     - Online_Articles  (4)
 - Resume_or_CV  (1)
 - Reviews  (1)
 - Rhode_Island_USA  (0)
     - Providence  (1)
 - Shop  (0)
 - Sports  (0)
     - Football  (1)
          - Cowboys  (0)
          - Patriots  (0)
     - Futbol  (1)
          - The_Rest  (0)
          - USA  (1)
 - Woodworking  (1)


Archives
 -2019  September  (32)
 -2019  August  (52)
 -2019  July  (55)
 -2019  June  (49)
 -2019  May  (49)
 -2019  April  (81)
 -2019  March  (94)
 -2019  February  (91)
 -2019  January  (15)
 -2018  December  (44)
 -2018  November  (43)
 -2018  October  (48)


My Sites

 - Millennium3Publishing.com

 - SponsorWorks.net

 - ListBug.com

 - TextEx.net

 - FindAdsHere.com

 - VisitLater.com