• Oct 12, 2007
The internet has made it incredibly easy for groups of enthusiasts to communicate and collaborate. Gearheads benefit a lot from this. It's easy to share pictures of our beloved rides, and with services like CafePress, you can even get some cool merchandise made up. Just like the record business is going after people who allegedly stole a whole bunch of music (how about the record company contracts, which are often a detailing of how the label will pillage an artist, cloaked in the fig leaf of legalese?), Ford has decided that it didn't like a bunch of Jaguar fans making up calendars and selling them to a small group of like-minded people. The idea that there'd be enthusiasts so enamored with one of its PAG properties that they'd go through all that effort was so abhorrent to Ford that the automaker shot off a trademark infringement lawsuit to put an end to the Leaper Love Fest. Maybe Jag's next owner will embrace the fans rather than alienate them.

Thanks for the tip, Chuck

[Source: XKE Data via Goolsbee.org]


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  • 25 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      I would do the same thing if I wasn't getting my due from someone else marketing something I created.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Ford created the e-type? really?

        Honestly, don't people see how ridiculous this is?
      • 7 Years Ago
      A smart lawyer seeking to balance protecting Fords ownership and control of the brand with goodwill from enthusiasts might send a letter saying "We own the Jaguar automotive brand and we appreciate what you and other enthusiast groups do to enhance and support our brand. Still, we need to protect our ownership of the brand in the legal environment, so we ask you to fill out the enclosed form and send us nominal payment of $1 for your use of the brand in the publication of your lovely calendars."

      I'm guessing this would have generated no ill will, no bad publicity, the publication of pretty calendars and averted any risk of the brand moving into the "public domain" as some legal alarmists have suggested. The Jaguar enthusiast group would've signed an agreement about how they were going to use the brand and would've paid for its use, but wouldn't have been inconvenienced in the process of doing so.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I point Ford to Wikipedia. Tons of copyright infringement there, with ZOMG!! pics of their cars!
      • 7 Years Ago
      I'd say Ford failed business 101. If you're the CEO what do you do when you tell your engineer not to design the car a certain way, but he does anyway and it becomes a wild success?

      You tell him never to do it again, give him a substantial raise -- just enough so he won't leave the company.

      So what Ford should have done is said, "Hey, will pay to have these printed and sent to all Ford enthusiasts as long as we get a piece of the pie."


      • 7 Years Ago
      Chucks cars - beautiful as always. Great shot.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Thank you "Eleventeen".

        It is just "car" though. I don't have the cash to support anything beyond a singular car. ;)

        --chuck
        http://chuck.goolsbee.org
      • 7 Years Ago
      Technically you guys are members of RIAA as well. So Ford is taking a page out of your playbook. Or we can just sit back and ignore that bit.

      Autoblog is owned by AOL/Time Warner. Warner Brothers is a member of RIAA (and MPAA).
      • 7 Years Ago
      Myself, if I were Ford I would promote the use of their name at all web sites that are complimentary of the brand. I would even offer support, tech, leaks, & the like. That builds the brand, not dilutes.

      Having enthusiasts run sites is like having people working for you for FREE!

      For sites that are knocking down the brand, pull out the lawyers and nit-pick them.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I'm with Jason on this. If the calender uses original photos (reader submitted or taken by the calender author), then Ford should piss off. BTW - the car in the photograph belongs to Chuck Goolsbee and was the RR of the Day one year ago (see below). Not exactly Ford's intellectual property but then again, when Jag was making the E-Type, Ford's best effort was the Thunderbird - no wonder they're embarrassed.

      What a pathetic bunch of wankers at Ford.

      http://www.autoblog.com/2006/09/27/rr-of-the-day-1965-jaguar-e-type/
      • 7 Years Ago
      What was the source of the photos/imagery used in the calendars? If the photos are taken by people and submitted by them, I don't see how Ford can say or do anything about it. If they're using promotional photos/material from Ford/Jaguar, then I could see an issue.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I believe that Hyundai has a very strong case against Ford for this.

      Why?

      Because they've already marketed the concept of "duhhhh" - which is exactly what Ford is doing right now.

      That's trademark infringement!
      • 7 Years Ago
      when things are good in the car industry, car companies have no problem with this these types of customer promotions...but when car companies are having a bad year etc they tend to tight lip everything possible thats out there....

      A lot of the websites have shut down or forced them to change names is due in part because they dont want the bad publicity that goes on via those means of communication...If everyone was only promoting the good with out the bad they wouldnt have a problem with those websites......

      This only goes to show u that FORD is not in good times financial...hence why they want to stop or slow the process of "word of mouth"
      • 7 Years Ago
      Take the number of calendars sold, A, multiply by the probable vale of each, B, multiply by the average out-of-court settlement, C. A times B times C equals X. If X is less than the cost of legal fees, we don't sue.


      i can't imagine this stunt will net in the black for Ford.
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