Using A Big Company C&D For Marketing

from the vote-daisy dept

Eric Goldman alerts us to an interesting response by Method Products, a small natural cleaning supply products company, after receiving a cease & desist letter from cleaning giant Clorox (pdf), demanding that Method stop using a daisy in its packaging on certain cleaning products because of Clorox’s trademarks on “Green Works,” including the use of a yellow flower, related to Green Works products. In response, Method set up, with a little poll asking people “who should own the daisy” with three options: Clorox, Mother Nature or Method. Nicely done.

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Comments on “Using A Big Company C&D For Marketing”

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vyvyan says:

We need reform. A big one!

There should be some penalty for these frivolous trademark infringement threat. Like you made a wrong claim on trademark infringement using ‘C&D’ there goes your trademark for one year. It will be put in public use for one full year, after than you can use it if you want to. Same for copyright, you make a wrong claim and you’re rights will be revoked for one year.

At least in this case they will worry about losing the brand image they have tried to make in long time (if any!) and getting lost in oblivion rather than just using legal muscle power to threaten small companies.

Del Boy says:

Clean it up

Using anything that is not specifically designed & unique for a logo is just wrong.
If it were a stylised flower picture – designed to look like a flower but having specific design qualities that make it unique would maybe pass.

I have seen companies use things like trees etc for their logos – but they are stylised to look a specific way – so as to make the brand easier to recognise, the logos themselves are not an acurate representation of the subject matter.

Me thinks Clorox has crossed a border here in trying to trademark something they do not own nor have designed or invented. shows that Clorox has the least support on this. But still I don’t see Clorox doing much with the Daisy just now so maybe they have decided to backoff.

TtfnJohn (profile) says:

I votes for mother nature!

At the back of my mind is the niggling little detail that Clorox makes chlorine bleach, one of the least eco-friendly chemicals imaginable. (Which no longer kills all bacteria, germs etc as those things tend to evolve at lightening speed compared to we humans.)

So Clorox being connected with green works even as a trade mark is just a bit beyond the pale while they continue to needlessly alarm people about the bacteria and stuff in their homes good and bad — so just wipe then all out!

Yellow daisy’s too, while we’re at it.



Anonymous Coward says:

lettter to Clorox

Dear Clorox,

Thank you for alerting me to the Method Products Company. Without your efforts I would never have known of them. Your efforts are appreciated and I just what to say that your marketing er legal er advertising department – whatever you’re calling it these days, is top notch.

A new Method Products customer

Brendan (profile) says:

There's more to this case...

Andrew Fraser, the CEO of Method who is addressed in the C&D, used to work for Clorox. He took over as President & GM of Clorox Canada (transplanted from Oakland head office) and left after the company performed poorly year after year.

So, there’s probably some bad blood here, on the part of Clorox.

For reference:

That said, all the stuff about Method turning this into great publicity for themselves is still true.

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