Lawyers Overdoing Trademark Protection

from the why-lawyers-shouldn't-run-businesses dept

Cory Doctorow is taking issue with lawyers who seem to only think in absolutes when it comes to trademark protection. He points out that while there is a valid reason to have trademarks to prevent someone from marketing their product as yours, these days too many lawyers are simply going after every use of a trademarked name. It’s expensive in legal fees – but mostly it’s just bad business. First, they end up going after non-commercial users of the name, and in some cases, those who are actually helping to promote the trademarked product for free. Second, when these stories become public, almost everyone realizes how backwards the company’s actions are, and it ends up reflecting poorly on them. Yet another example of lawyers thinking like lawyers, and business people not thinking enough to step in and say “sure, while that may make legal sense, it doesn’t make any business sense.” The law and the best business decisions for a company may not align exactly, and it’s up to the business people to understand when it’s time to overrule the lawyers.

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