Do Morons In A Hurry Like Lettuce Restaurants?
from the lettuce-be dept
First it was a trademark fight over potatoes, and now lettuce? Eric Goldman points us to a trademark fight over the use of the word “Lettuce” in the name of a restaurant. You see, there’s a restaurant chain called Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises, who apparently got the trademark on “LETTUCE” when used in restaurant or catering businesses. Yet, a couple of folks, apparently blissfully unaware of such a trademark, tried to open up a restaurant called “Lettuce mix.” When confronted over this issue, they covered their original sign with a banner that read: “Let us be!” and “Name pending…” but with images of heads of lettuce.
Now, even if you accept that it makes sense for Lettuce Entertain You to own the trademark on “LETTUCE” in such situations, it would seem like what the new restaurant owners did was reasonable. Not so, according to LEYE. It’s claiming that the new name pending banner still violates its trademark. Either way, the Lettuce mix owners are fighting back against the entire trademark claim over the word lettuce, and put up that other banner to call some attention to the trademark threat.
While the battle over the larger trademark issue will continue, in the meantime, the judge in the case denied the injunction request against the temporary banner, noting that the banner itself protesting the trademark dispute isn’t actually “use in commerce” and thus, is not covered by trademark law.
Either way… really? There’s a legal battle going on as to whether or not you can use the word “lettuce” (or even a homonym with an image of lettuce) in the name of a salad bar? What is the world coming to?