Blue Jean Cable Shows One Way To Respond To Overly Broad Patent Threats

from the show-me-the-infringement! dept

A few folks have been submitting the response letter sent by Blue Jean Cable’s President to Monster Cable after Monster sent a threatening letter claiming that Blue Jean violated various Monster design patents and trademarks. While the response is a bit over the top, Blue Jean’s Kurt Denke makes it clear that Monster’s threat letter appears to be nothing more than a fishing expedition/bullying tactic and he won’t take it. He responds to each claim, noting that Blue Jean doesn’t appear to infringe at all, and asking for much greater detail in response, rather than simply being bullied into submission. Design patents are rather limited, but it looks like Monster is acting as if they’re utility patents in an effort to scare off Blue Jean Cable, not expecting that the company’s execs might understand the difference between the two.

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Companies: blue jean cable, monster cable

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Comments on “Blue Jean Cable Shows One Way To Respond To Overly Broad Patent Threats”

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30 Comments
ashridah says:

Actually the cable does matter...

But not the way monster would have you believe.

Read some of the articles on bluejeanscable.com about HDMI cables, they explain quite a few of the issues that go into supporting the higher-end specs of HDMI.

That said, yeah, for the kinds of distance monster would have you buying cables for, the signal loss will be so negligable… and for digital, it’ll rarely be enough to lose a bit, and error correction will compensate for that. I fully recommend buying decent cable (from bluejeans who will cut to length!) if you need to go 30-40ft, but for smaller lengths, usually any ordinary cable will do. (bluejeans do have some cheap hdmi ones tho, but you need to be willign to wait out shipping from washington state)

TX CHL Instructor (profile) says:

Scratch Monster Cables

I’m going to look into buying Blue Jean cables from now on. I LIKE that guy’s attitude.

Not that I ever bought Monster Cables anyway. After all, copper wire is copper wire, and the connectors either fit properly, or not. I certainly can’t hear the difference between Monster and Radio Shack, and I suspect anybody who says he can is deluding himself (or herself) or just imagining things that aren’t really there.

Kevin says:

Beautiful!

I’ve read this six times, and it gets better every time! I love it; a small company unwilling to be intimidated into a foolish response, and a lawyer (former lawyer at least) with scruples. Like Mr. Denke, I’ve never understood why companies respond to nuisance lawsuits by bowingto the bully who can’t compete honestly on the open market (like Monster). Its like paying off a ransom. If you’ve paid em off once, every kidnapper in the neighborhoods knows YOU WILL PAY OFF. I’m a BJC customer and on top of it all, they make fanstastic products at a reasonable price.

Kevin says:

Beautiful!

I’ve read this six times, and it gets better every time! I love it; a small company unwilling to be intimidated into a foolish response, and a lawyer (former lawyer at least) with scruples. Like Mr. Denke, I’ve never understood why companies respond to nuisance lawsuits by bowingto the bully who can’t compete honestly on the open market (like Monster). Its like paying off a ransom. If you’ve paid em off once, every kidnapper in the neighborhoods knows YOU WILL PAY OFF. I’m a BJC customer and on top of it all, they make fanstastic products at a reasonable price.

Mark says:

BJC is the best

I have bought tons of cables for several home theaters over the past 6 years and I have only bought them from BlueJeanCables.
Their talent, quality and knowledge is fantastic. Their prices are very reasonable and Though they are in Washington State and I am in Saint Paul, MN, I still get them within 2-3 days of my order!

I have always sworn by them and recommended them to others, but this letter makes me smile even more.
We love ya’ Kurt!

~Mark Fawcett

Derek Kerton (profile) says:

A Tax On The Foolish

Just as gambling is a tax on those poor at math, Monster cables is a tax on those bad at engineering.

For those of you making 6ft. runs of wire behind your stereo and TV components, you will NEVER perceive any difference in quality between Walmart AV rack wires and Monster. I know, some of you think I’m wrong, you DO notice the difference. Listen, just have your mom do a blind test on you. Cheap cables vs. Monster. If you can say which it is correctly at least seven times out of ten, let us know in the comments.

Stop spending your allowance on stupid cables.

I was at CES this January, and I see that Monster was huge there, and they were joined by lots of other “big wire” competitors. This market is growing. PT Barnum is right again.

Their lawsuit? What a joke! Putting more metal and plastic in a wire is patented? Patently useless, yes, but an obvious and stupid idea.

Derek Kerton (profile) says:

Suckers Like Me

Hmmm. I fell for that old mistake. Apparently, PT Barnum, who I invoke in the comment above, did not say the line famously associated with him:

“There’s a sucker born every minute.”

At least that’s what Wikipedia says:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/There's_a_sucker_born_every_minute

But I’m not going to listen to Wikipedia! Certainly not where Brain Surgery or Hi-Fidelity is concerned:
http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20080415/013346850.shtml

ScytheNoire (profile) says:

New Hero

Kurt needs to become a super hero and join the EFF and fight against the bully corporations that spend their time acting like mafia goons.

I absolutely loved the letter, and it only gets better the more you read. It would have been priceless to see the faces and comments in the law office that got that letter back, because they just got their asses handed to them.

I hope Kurt files a lawsuit back at Monster Cables and attacks them.

Response from BJC (profile) says:

Thought you would like to know

I emailed BJC to let them know I was posting a link to their letter on TechDirt. Below is their response.

First, my apologies for this being a “form letter” response; we have been swamped with e-mails of support and encouragement from every quarter and it’s become impossible to respond to each one individually.

As my letter to Monster’s counsel indicated, we believe Monster’s threats to be completely baseless, and we are prepared, if Monster unwisely proceeds with a lawsuit, to fight it with passionate intensity. We are extremely
heartened by the public support and by the interest that people have shown in this situation.

We will be continuing to update the public with information about this if anything further develops.

Thanks,

Kurt Denke
Blue Jeans Cable

Obvious Troll says:

Re: Damn

I can sum up that response in one word.

“Owned!”

Not only does he let the lawyers know he’s not going to be intimidated, he even points out how the way they worked is morally reprehensible and he knows it.

“Not only am I unintimidated by litigation; I sometimes rather miss it.”
Could you throw the gauntlet on the table a bit more?

Kurt needs to be contacted by every company being bullied and asked to draft such letters.

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