Lowes Tries To Silence Sucks Site For Complaints About Lowes

from the did-someone-call-Streisand's-name? dept

We've covered a variety of cases involving so-called "sucks sites," where someone registers as a domain name the name of a company and appends sucks to the end in order to create a complaint site. Companies have often complained that these sites are trademark violations, but that usually doesn't pass the moron in a hurry test. The latest such case involves home improvement store Lowes. A guy who bought a fence from them was upset that the installers botched the job. Lowes refused to take responsibility, so he set up a site at Lowes-Sucks.com and promptly received a cease and desist from the company claiming trademark violation. While early on, a few companies were able to get sucks sites shut down, it's become a lot rarer, as judges tend to recognize that criticism is perfectly legitimate -- and no one is likely to confuse a sucks site as being endorsed by the company. In the meantime, of course, in sending out such a cease and desist, Lowes has just drawn a lot more attention to the fact that they won't take responsibility for the botched fence install. Wouldn't it have just been better for business to fix the damn fence?

Filed Under: streisand effect, sucks site
Companies: lowes

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  1. identicon
    MyKitchenSucks, 26 Sep 2007 @ 6:52am

    look at both sides of the argument

    As far as the fence goes, yea, it looks like the installer's work was kind of sub-par, but nothing that couldn't be fixed in an afternoon by a qualified installer (although its not up to an installer to level out your yard so the fence touches the ground everywhere). The fact that Lowes would not even attempt to fix the obvious problems with the gates says a lot about how little the manager at that store cares for his customers. Or... how much of an asshat this guy is. I'm kind of leaning towards this guy being an asshat, from the way he goes on and on about certain things. I've been on the both ends of the same customer complaint conversation before, so I feel for the guy, but I can also feel for the store manager, having to deal with guys like this is tough. I can imagine this guy demanding all sorts of things from the store manager, to the point of being unreasonable and overreaching.

    So who is in the wrong and who is in the right on the subject of the fence? Probably a little bit of both. You want a chain link fence that is escape-proof, then you have to do a little more work to your yard to make sure there are no dips and valley's. Chain link fencing can't make quick elevation changes, because you have to stretch it very tight, and stretching it makes it straight. If your lot has a lot of those dips, you need a different kind of fence.

    However, the moral high ground goes to this guy. As soon as Lowes tried to mess with his freedom of speech, they crossed the line. Yea, he might be a pain in the ass, yea he might be completely wrong, or hell... even outright lying (I don't think he is), he might even have some sort of mental issues (I doubt this, as well) but he certainly has every right to critisize and complain, up to the point of making threats or outright slander. So, piss off Lowes, I would never shop somewhere that uses legal threats to try and intimidate people, especially when they have no real legal standing, and are relying on their size and bankroll to push people around.

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