Fake product draws real cease-and-desist letter

by Walter Olson on June 21, 2010

Lawyers for the National Pork Board, which maintains the trademark “The Other White Meat,” sent a 12-page cease-and-desist letter to a website which had promoted cans of supposed “Unicorn Meat” as the “new white meat.” It is not clear whether Faegre & Benson realized that the cans were a fake product intended for April Fool’s Day. [ThinkGeek] More: Lowering the Bar.

{ 9 comments }

1 Bill Poser 06.22.10 at 1:29 am

Even if this had been a real product, I question whether “the NEW white meat” should be considered as infringing “the OTHER white meat”. The epithets have different meanings and in fact serve to contrast distinct products.

2 Ps 06.22.10 at 3:48 am

Like North Face and South Butt?

3 Richard Nieporent 06.22.10 at 7:30 am

I’m only surprised that PETA didn’t complain about it. :)

4 VMS 06.22.10 at 7:36 am

You mean that the product that I’ve been buying all along that’s labeled “Unicorn Meat” is an April Fool’s joke! Hogwash!

Did anyone consider the possibility that the May 5th Cease and Desist Letter was a Cinque De Mayo joke?

5 captnhal 06.22.10 at 7:47 am

I’d like to know if, and how much the law firm got paid for this nonsense and if the pork board complained and got their money back.

6 CALACTX 06.22.10 at 9:00 am

“This is clearly the case of an attorney tooting his own unicorn!”

7 PKO Strany 06.22.10 at 11:11 pm

What would they say about advertising “Long Pig” as “The other, other white meat?”

8 Robert 06.23.10 at 12:24 am

In all fairness, don’t you have to show that you’ve taken steps to protect your trademark? That’s what my lawyer explained to me when we went through the process for the name of my consulting company and several of our branded products.

If the pork council didn’t routinely send out these letters, couldn’t that weaken their trademark?

9 David Schwartz 06.24.10 at 5:58 am

The letter is meritless. No chance of confusion equals no infringement. No product for sale equals no dilution.

Comments on this entry are closed.