Biting the hand that feeds it
April 6, 2005 1:08 PM   Subscribe

Kevin Brancato (of Truck and Barter fame) has been running, a site dedicated to discussing the social and economic impact of Wal-Mart, for about a year. Though he has generally been one of the web's biggest Wal-Mart supporters, the firm has nonetheless issued to him a Cease and Decist Order.
posted by trharlan (11 comments total)
posted by quonsar at 1:17 PM on April 6, 2005

The irony is strong with this FPP.

And what quonsar had Nelson say.
posted by fenriq at 1:32 PM on April 6, 2005

Did Wal-Mart even read before they sent out the lawyers? I can't even fathom what good they believe will come of dragging perhaps their only vocal fan on the internet into court. Is there any legal reasoning behind why they would want to stop a pro-walmart site?

Also, what nelson by way of quonsar said.
posted by Kellydamnit at 1:35 PM on April 6, 2005

It's a trademark claim, which is different than copyright as most C&D are issued over. The domain name is their trademark slogan, so I can see where Wal-Mart is coming from. You have to go after trademark infringement or you lose it, unfortunately.

I don't think it's as cut and dry as most C&D notices that get issued.
posted by mathowie at 1:38 PM on April 6, 2005

You're probably right, mathowie, but they could have very easily approached him and asked him to change it. He'd have happily done so, I'm sure.

This is WalMart sending out the goons instead of trying talking first. Stupid and demonstrative of the mentality of the company.
posted by fenriq at 1:44 PM on April 6, 2005

It actually seems totally reasonable, and I'm no fan of Wal-Mart. Unfortunately, when you've got a bunch of corporate lawyers, one thing they tend to tell you is that just talking to someone is no good.
posted by OmieWise at 1:52 PM on April 6, 2005

Maybe now he knows that Walmart is a horrible corporation that doesn't care about people?
posted by Hildago at 3:54 PM on April 6, 2005

fenriq, IANL, but I think 'just asking' isn't enough - future infringers could cite them as 'uncontested prior use'. Unfortnately, you have to be seen to agressively protect your trademarks, else they revert to the public domain. It is ironic, but there's not much different they could have done if they wanted to keep their trademark strong...

Getting and retaining a trademark is quite a pain-in-the-arse process from the few dealings I've had with it...
posted by BadSeamus at 4:21 PM on April 6, 2005

what a loser.
posted by 3.2.3 at 4:48 PM on April 6, 2005

Compared to most C&D orders, WM's was very, VERY polite.

I want to make it clear that Wal-Mart did not send in the goons! I have openly stated that Wal-Mart’s intention is not to stifle free speech (they have no problem with and the like), but to rightfully defend the integrity of its intellectual property. ALP just happens to be in their way.

My wife greatly appreciated Nelson's opinion. And thanks for both the hearty approval and mocking scorn from the rest of you!

--Kevin Brancato
posted by rachmaninov1 at 5:15 AM on April 7, 2005

metafilter: thanks for both the hearty approval and mocking scorn
posted by hugsnkisses at 4:32 AM on April 8, 2005

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