Posted by Abe Sauer on September 24, 2012 10:14 AM
As one potential war in China heats up, another is officially over, at least according to one brand.
"LEGO and BanBao Have Ended Their War" is the title of the press release sent out by BanBao Europe. The announcement celebrated a settlement between there two brands under which the duo will "seek a fair competition based on respect for each other's position."
If one didn't know any better, it might sound as if Banbao — less well known as Guangdong Jumbo Grand Plastic Moulding Industrial Co., Ltd. — had finally settled a corporate dispute between equals. But Banbao was a lot less conciliatory in more private statements.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 19, 2012 02:08 PM
Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer only been running the company since the middle of July but she’s got plenty of items ticked off on her to-do list: Bringing In Cash, Doling Out Phones, Changing Logo.
First off, her company just pulled in $4.3 billion after taxes from its “deal to sell part of its stake in Alibaba back to the Chinese Internet giant,” according to Wired. That’s pretty sweet, considering the company has been struggling financially for the last year. Instead of using it make acquisitions and build a big nest egg, though, Yahoo! is handing out $3.65 billion of it to its once-suffering investors, and hanging onto just $646 million. And what can you get for that?
The company will also now be saving a little bit of dough every time it prints something out on letterhead. Mayer also approved removing the registered trademark symbol from the company’s logo. Mayer posted an image of a deposed ® to her Instagram feed on Monday. It looks like it is waiting to gather with its R brethren to be put off in the backyard, like the Russians did with the fallen statues of its former heroes.Continue reading...
the revolution will be televised
Posted by Sheila Shayon on September 17, 2012 03:15 PM
Occupy Wall Street protesters gathered in New York's financial district to mark the first anniversary of the movement, their presence contained by metal barriers and riot-clad police forming human walls. The current activities, dubbed a “roving carnival of resistance” include “nonviolent civil disobedience” as well as events planned in at least 15 other cities including Asheville, North Carolina, San Francisco and Hilo, Hawaii.
Chants of "All day, all week, Occupy Wall Street" and "We got sold out, banks got bailed out," greeted Wall Street workers arriving at their offices, echoes of the original goal of the protest to generate "a swirl of mobile occupations of corporate lobbies and intersections," as stated on the Occupy website for the Sept. 15-17 anniversary events, promoted on Twitter with the hashtags #S15, #S16 and #S17.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 11, 2012 05:10 PM
Andy Warhol helped establish Lou Reed's old band, Velvet Underground. The Rock and Roll Hall of Famers used to be the house band at Warhol’s Factory happenings in NYC and laid down the tunes at the famed artist’s exquisitely named Exploding Plastic Inevitable events. Heck, Warhol managed the band in its early days.
Perhaps most famously of all, Warhol's painting of a banana graced the cover of the band’s 1967 debut, The Velvet Underground & Nico, inarguably one of the most influential rock albums of all time despite not selling many copies when it first came out. Brian Eno reportedly quipped that only 10,000 people bought the disc, but all of them went out and then formed bands.
So Warhol’s banana, which he never trademarked, became a symbol of that album and the rock revolution that marked the decade. So when the Underground’s lawyers got word that the Warhol Foundation had licensed the image for use on iPhone and iPad products, a suit was filed; it marked a moment of incongruity to a relationship that had long seemed harmonious.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 6, 2012 01:12 PM
The ice-cream company that gave the world Schweddy Balls and Karamel Sutra isn’t apparently amused by somebody using the name Ben & Cherry’s. Perhaps Ben & Jerry’s discomfort comes from the fact that the somebody in question is a hardcore porn film producer.
The Vermont-based, Unilever-owned B&J’s has filed a trademark suit against B&C’s, the Associated Press reports, in order to stop them “tarnish(ing)” the ice-cream maker’s name.
Ben & Cherry’s doesn’t just use a variation of the B&J’s name and logo on its films; it also gives its videos names based on Ben & Jerry’s flavors. Witness "Boston Cream Thigh," at right, ''New York Fat & Chunky," and "Peanut Butter D-Cup," the AP reports. Not only that, the packaging of the films contains elements that appear on Ben & Jerry’s packaging, such as “a grazing cow, green grass and large white puffy clouds.”
It's not that Ben & Jerry’s is averse to hanky panky; after all, the brand using a more G-rated bit of romance – spooning (get it?) – to help sell its new Greek Frozen Yogurt.Continue reading...
Posted by Barry Silverstein on September 5, 2012 05:25 PM
Fashion brands are particularly fussy when it comes to protecting an attribute that defines their very soul — or in the case of Christian Louboutin, its sole.
The designer of shoes with iconic red bottoms that sell for as high as $3995 a pair, Louboutin has been sticking its stilettos into counterfeiters who sell fake versions of pricey pairs of their shoes, as well as other fashion brands who dare to step on their trademarked sole.
Last August, Louboutin took legal action in a U.S. court against another French fashion firm, Yves Saint Laurent. The case had interesting trademark implications: Louboutin had argued that YSL was infringing on its intellectual property by introducing all-red shoes. But a New York judge rebuffed the argument, stating that "Loubotin's claim would cast a red cloud over the whole industry, cramping what other designers could do while allowing Louboutin to paint with a full palette. Louboutin would thus be able to market a total outfit in red, while other designers would not."
Louboutin appealed the decision and now, in the latest twist, it has won a trademark battle, but not the trademark war.Continue reading...
Posted by Matthew Moore on August 6, 2012 11:02 AM
It's a little unusual that Calvin Cordozar Broadus, Jr. thinks he's Bob Marley reincarnated, especially given he was 9 years old when the reggae legend passed. Snoop Dogg's name change to Snoop Lion is not all that unusual among the celebrity set, however.
Snoop Lion, as the artist formerly known as Snoop Dogg will now be known, claims he found himself on a trip to Jamaica in January and is pursuing a higher calling. "I have always said I was Bob Marley reincarnated," he announced. "I feel I have always been a Rastafari. I just didn't have my third eye open, but it's wide open right now."
Apparently tired of singing about drugs, alcohol, and women, Snoop Lion is — of course — releasing a reggae album under his new persona, titled — of course — “Reincarnated.” He's calling it an album he hopes his "kids and grandparents can listen to."Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on August 3, 2012 06:11 PM
We have an update on a story we published earlier this week about the confusion arising between South Africa's 466/64 Fashion line, which is launching in the U.S. and plans to stage a show at New York Fashion Week next month, and the Nelson Mandela Foundation.
According to Erin Patton, CEO of Company B — the exclusive license holder for 466/64 Fashion in North America — the company never claimed the direct involvement of Mandela or his foundation in 466/64. As Patton was quoted by WWD on Aug. 2nd, Mandela "is not directly involved. That was never intimated. All the press materials say it was inspired by him." (Italics ours.) As Patton also told the Daily Beast, "We have a guarded approach so that we are not overly commercializing his image."
To counter the claims to the contrary by the North American representatives for the Nelson Mandela Foundation, the Dallas, Texas-based Patton asked us to share a statement by Sello Hatang, a spokesperson for the Mandela Foundation in South Africa, to clarify the backstory to the clothing line.Continue reading...