Sunday, July 20, 2008

Green Shift Takes on The What Do I Know Grit

Oh my! Isn't that just interesting. As if the fight with the entire Liberal Party of Canada wasn't enough, apparently Green Shift now wants to enter the ever-dangerous Blogworld (TM pending) to explain their side of the story.

Odd really. At least the Conservatives refuse to talk about "cases in front of the courts". Yet some unidentified Green Shift person has come to Blogworld (TM Pending) to give some explanations and some advice to yours truly. In fairness to Green Shift, perhaps this person doesn't even belong to them. Perhaps it's just another Conservative troll trying to help out. You be the judge.

Here's their statement in my comment section:

greenshift said...

Whoever buys into the idea that you can protect yourself by buying up all surrounding web sites - you might want to consider that someone can simply affix your name to the end of their own website with a forward slash - they don't need to register a new site at all. Secondly, where does it end - we / Green Shift do own a multitude of "Green Shift" domains but do you really think there will not always be one you don't have... come on people - there are now tonnes of endings and soon to be even more, and multiply that by all the verbs that someone could affix to it - that is a losing battle. Trademarks on the other hand do have parameters and for everyone who has no clue about what this means you might want to do a little reading. The biggest issue with a trademark is how far do your right span and can you afford to protect it. If a Political Party started a campaign using the trademark from a very well known company, it is guaranteed that they would receive a Cease and Desist - the difference here is that they ignored it and hence the fact that it has turned in to a lawsuit. Why did they ignore it - maybe they gambled that we could not afford to protect our rights. If you don't believe me - I recommend that you read up - maybe starting at Industry Canada and the Canadian Intellectual Property Office and then looking at the number of cases where small companies cannot afford to exercise their rights.

8 comments:

Scott Tribe said...

If you have something like Statcounter or another stats program that records IP address, I can tell you if it's a legitimate person from Greenshift or not, because Jennifer Wright, the head of Green Shift, visited my site, and by tracking back her IP, I was able to confirm it was her (and got it confirmed from an email from her personally).

Frankly Canadian said...

I don't ever remember the Liberal Party of Canada ever getting a cease and desist order from the courts, let alone ignoring it. Sounds like typical Conservative B.S. as usual!

James Curran said...

Check your inbox Scott.

Mark Francis said...

Attempts to extend IP rights to the point of preventing use of a word or phrase in any context other casual use is an attack upon our freedom of expression. Large corporations who try this crap are legitimately condemned for it. I don't see why a smaller company should be exempt from similar criticism.

quitomaggi said...

Actually Mark, passing off has been fairly clearly defined and in the case of a "common" phrase or word the "heavy onus" is on the owner of the trademark or copyright. For example, anybody would have a hard time defending the use of "Just do it" because Nike has used it so heavily and exclusively. Obviously the words just, do and it are all very "common" but Nike has successfully defended this copyright. Whether 7 years of limited use of the term "green shift" meets this heavy onus is to be seen. The issue shouldn't be whether Green Shift has a case, in my opinion it does NOT, but whether or not this entire issue could have been avoided. Making fun of and belittling Jennifer Wright, as fun as it is, is not what we should be doing. Arrogance and stupidity are not a good combination.

Kwil said...

Too bad The Green Shift doesn't actually have the trademark yet. That'd go a long way to bolstering their case from "WTF?" to "Oh good grief.."

Unfortunately for the company, I expect the Liberal Party lawyers have actually read the trademark law in question and figured out that the standard is such that an infringement exists only when a reasonable person might assume that the holder of the trademark is supplying the products or services of the alleged infringer, or alternatively, that the alleged infringer is supplying the products or services of the trademark holder.

Now, other than a blogging tory, which right there lets out the "reasonable person" part, I'm not sure who could be confused as to whether a private company could provide a federal taxation and spending plan, or to whether a political party would be supplying recyclable dixie cups.

Cicely said...

Anyone of you folk would be fighting if the CPoC took the name of your business for one of their policy planks. If you say you that isn't the case, I wouldn't believe you. I agree with quitto that whether Wright wins or loses the real point is that it could all have been avoided were it not for the lack of planning, and coordination by Dion and those that named the plan.

James Curran said...

Um. No. I'd be thanking my lucky stars for millions in free advertising. Thank you very much. Let alone would I travel to Ottawa (where my company isn't) to hand deliver a copy to the Liberal Party and then hold a press conference (Again in Ottawa where my business isn't) and be vague to the national press with my answers and look like I was seeking total opportunism and damages that don't exist.

Here's their Industry Canada Profile. Do they even sound similar to a Political Party's plan?

http://strategis.ic.gc.ca/app/ccc/srch/nvgt.do?lang=eng&prtl=1&sbPrtl=&estblmntNo=234567069364&profile=cmpltPrfl&app=1