Even Restaurant Critics Are Recognizing How Trademark Is Being Abused
from the forge-this dept
Well, first of all, it's actually perfectly legal to open a restaurant on somebody's coattails. See all those different pizza places or fast food joints? They all started somewhere, and others copied the idea -- and we all think that's a good thing, because it's called competition. But, more importantly, there's no indication whatsoever that Forge was even remotely riding on The Forge's coattails, or that any diner in New York would somehow be confused that Forge was somehow connected to the (very different style) Miami restaurant. As Bruni writes:
How likely is it, really, that a patron of the Miami Beach restaurant The Forge is going to be looking for an offshoot of it in New York, when the Miami Beach restaurant hasn't advertised or promoted such an offshoot?When trademark disputes are even getting angry rants from food critics, you have to think something is seriously wrong with the way trademark law is working these days.
How likely is it that, among the gazillion restaurants in New York, this patron will find his or her way to Mr. Forgione's Forge and, after looking at its rustic, brick-walled setting, mistake it as a sibling to a place in Miami Beach whose waiters apparently wear bow ties?
How many diners are really going to be lining Mr. Forgione's pockets with money that rightfully belongs near the Everglades, or making assumptions about The Forge in Miami Beach based on meals at Forge in TriBeCa? Especially in an Internet era when diners are better informed than ever?