Monster Energy Drink Backs Down Due To Public Pressure; Vermonster Beer Lives On

from the but-what-about-the-others? dept

You may recall that we recently wrote about the effort by Hansen's drink company to stop a small Vermont brewery from offering Vermonster Beer, claiming that it infringed on the trademark they held for Monster Energy Drink (because any moron would confuse beer with an energy drink). That situation got a ton of publicity (all of it negative towards Monster Energy Drink and Hansens), and Brendan alerts us to the news that it looks like Hansen's has backed down. And the guy behind the Rock Art Brewery (maker of Vermonster) has put up an open letter with the timeline of events (pdf) -- thanking everyone for creating the public pressure that got Hansens to back down.

Of course, it looks like Hansens only backed down in this one instance. Yet, as we noted, Hansens appears to have contracted with notorious abuser of the trademark system, Continental Enterprises, who likes to send cease-and-desist letters to anyone even mentioning a trademark name. Just recently, beyond the whole Vermonster situation, Hanses -- via CE -- has gone after a beverage review site (which had a negative review of Monster Energy Drink) and an actor who was a movie monster.

Will Hansens call off Continental Enterprises from its abusive practices?

It's great that public pressure got the company to back down on Vermonster beer, but those other situations didn't get nearly as much attention.

Matt Nadeau, from the Rock Art Brewery is asking how we can continue to use the community that came together to help him to do more to protect other small businesses from the same thing. As a starting point, why not point them to these other abuses by Hansens and CE and get Hansens to back down? After that, it would be great to get people to recognize that we need serious trademark law reform that brings trademark law back to its intended purpose: acting as a consumer protection technique against appropriation and confusion, rather than what many believe it's become: a property right and a monopoly.
Hide this

Thank you for reading this Techdirt post. With so many things competing for everyone’s attention these days, we really appreciate you giving us your time. We work hard every day to put quality content out there for our community.

Techdirt is one of the few remaining truly independent media outlets. We do not have a giant corporation behind us, and we rely heavily on our community to support us, in an age when advertisers are increasingly uninterested in sponsoring small, independent sites — especially a site like ours that is unwilling to pull punches in its reporting and analysis.

While other websites have resorted to paywalls, registration requirements, and increasingly annoying/intrusive advertising, we have always kept Techdirt open and available to anyone. But in order to continue doing so, we need your support. We offer a variety of ways for our readers to support us, from direct donations to special subscriptions and cool merchandise — and every little bit helps. Thank you.

–The Techdirt Team

Filed Under: monster, monster energy drink, trademark, vermonster
Companies: continental enterprises, hansens, monster energy drink, rock art brewery

Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread

  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 23 Oct 2009 @ 4:16pm

    Re: Anonymous Coward

    Agreed, let's do it.

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter

Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Make this the First Word or Last Word. No thanks. (get credits or sign in to see balance)    
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Discord

The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...

Recent Stories

This site, like most other sites on the web, uses cookies. For more information, see our privacy policy. Got it

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.