Canadian Political Party Threatens Widow For Using Its Logo In Ad Criticizing Canadian Government

from the how-do-you-spell-streisand-in-canadian dept

Canadian Michaela Keyserlingk lost her husband Robert to mesothelioma in 2009. That's the form of cancer commonly associated with exposure to asbestos. Not surprisingly, she's not particularly happy about asbestos, and she's taken to running online banner ads against asbestos as part of her response. The ads say: "Canada is the only western country that still exports deadly asbestos." And, here's the tricky part: it apparently includes the logo of the (ruling) Conservative Party in Canada. As Rob Hyndman alerts us, the Conservative Party is not at all happy. In fact, it's threatening to sue her for trademark infringement. The Globe & Mail story linked here doesn't do anything useful like show the actual banner, so we've hunted it down, and you can see it below:
That's the party's logo on the right, of course. You can see why the party might be upset, but damn, was it ever a braindead move to threaten a poor old widow for trademark infringement over something like this. As even the woman notes, she doesn't have much money. Threatening and/or suing her doesn't do a damn thing... other than give her campaign a ton of free attention.

Filed Under: asbestos, canada, conservative party, mesothelioma, michaela keyserlingk, tories, trademark


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 16 Aug 2011 @ 8:54am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Whether or not that was the intent of the person posting the message does not control whether that is now the message is likely to be interpreted.

    At any rate, you really seem to be going off on an unrelated tangent. The other AC said the point of the Conservative action was to get her to stop using the mark. I'm not sure what her intent has to do with whether their email will do that.

    I think the other poster may be right that the email will ultimately get her to remove the Conservative logo. But that was not my point (the opposite of "how have you shown he is wrong?" is not "he is right.").

    My points were: (1) that simply because the widow said she would not remove the mark does not mean that she will not do so eventually, and (2) media attention to this dispute helps dispel any confusion regarding Conservative sponsorship of the message, so I fail to see how that is contrary to the Conservatives' goal here.

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