Infomercial Companies Never Learn: Another One Suing Site For Negative Reviews

from the or-you-could-just-improve-your-product dept

Greg Beck, from Public Citizen, has written us in the past a few times about bogus trademark lawsuits being brought against online review sites, such as InfomercialScams.com. Back in May there was a case where a company advertising its wares via infomercials sued the site for trademark infringement. Clearly, it was not the trademark use that was the problem (especially since it's difficult to see how that's trademark infringement). It was merely a way to try to get negative reviews (written by third party users of the site) taken offline. A similar case came up this fall when the infamous Video Professor sued 100 anonymous critics on the site, demanding that the owner of InfomercialScams.com turn over their IP addresses.

Beck is now back alerting us to the fact that the Video Professor has withdrawn his subpoena for info from the site, but is still forging ahead with the lawsuit (and is seeking the identity of a user on Wikipedia). However, he also notes that yet another company that advertises via infomercials is now suing InfomercialScams, claiming trademark infringement. Once again, this is clearly not trademark infringement, but an attempt by the company to bully an independent site into taking negative reviews offline. Just imagine if any of these companies put half as much effort into improving their products and services instead of calling the lawyers whenever anyone has anything critical to say about these firms.

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  1. identicon
    SLR, 24 Dec 2007 @ 6:12pm

    Video Professor

    This has got to be the funniest and most futile court case I've heard about it a long time.

    1st Dumb Move: Trying to force a blog site to give up personal information on its users. Most sites store that allow users to create accounts with them have some type of user confidentiality agreement, so I expect a long hard uphill fight for Mr. Video Professor.

    2nd Dumb Move: Even if the sites give up their information, how credible is it? How many individuals use an online alias and fill out online forms with bogus info?

    3rd Dumb Move: Lets say they do find enough to narrow it down (say Video Professor sues by IP), now they have the long uphill battle to prove who was actually using the computer and submitted the post.

    4rd Dumb Move: Lets say the planets were in alignment and Video doctor gets enough info to take an individual to court. He's fighting an extremely controversial issue. People generally are very protective of the first amendment. Anything that even comes close to infringing on amendment will be met with strong resistance (unless its 'masked' as for 'our protection-- ie: the Patriot Act WTF???)...

    Just my 2 cents...

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