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TNF sues teen over "the south butt"
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By Evan1984
Dec 15, 2009

So, apparently, TNF has joined the ranks of Metallica in getting their undies in a bunch over some teen that still lives with their mom.

news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20091215/ap_on_fe_st/us_odd_north_face_l>>>

They're suing over copyright infringement because the boy is selling stuff that says "the south butt" and has an altered TNF logo. I think the clothing is obnoxious, but suing the kids seems a bit beneath them, if you ask me.

What's your thoughts?

Evan


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By DaveB
Dec 15, 2009
Vitruvian Man (da Vinci)

Sorry, whether you like the clothing or not, little Jimmy needs to think of something original. TNF has the right to sue to protect its image, logo, and intellectual property. Even parodies must seek legal permission to use well-known, copyrighted, corporate logos from their owners - it appears little Jimmy did not do this.

PS: - Oh yeah, Jimmy is 18 years old...an adult, at least legally.


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By Andy Laakmann
Site Landlord
From Bend, OR
Dec 15, 2009
Racked and loaded... name that splitter behind me? Hint, its on Supercrack Buttress

Actually, a lawyer can correct me if I am wrong but it is my understanding that if a trademark holder does not defend their trademark, and knowingly lets an offender slide... they can lose the mark.


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By Goodhue
From Boulder, CO
Dec 15, 2009

I wonder if little Jimmy knows "The South Butt" is an equally relevant mountain geography term.


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By Erik W
From Bay Area, CA
Dec 15, 2009
North face of Ama Dablam - taken on approach to Kongma La.

Andy Laakmann wrote:
Actually, a lawyer can correct me if I am wrong but it is my understanding that if a trademark holder does not defend their trademark, and knowingly lets an offender slide... they can lose the mark.

You are correct, sir. I wish I could check out the company, but I think all the folks linking from the yahoo page just crashed that little bastard's site. Welcome to the big time, kid.


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By Kev007
Dec 15, 2009

Here's a side-by-side of the logo's.
content.usatoday.com/communities/ondeadline/post/2009/12/nor>>>


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By Andy Laakmann
Site Landlord
From Bend, OR
Dec 15, 2009
Racked and loaded... name that splitter behind me? Hint, its on Supercrack Buttress

"The South Butt has previously made it clear to the North Face that the consuming public is insightful enough to know the difference between a face and a butt," he said in a statement.

Depends on the face I guess.....


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By DaveB
Dec 15, 2009
Vitruvian Man (da Vinci)

Andy Laakmann wrote:
"The South Butt has previously made it clear to the North Face that the consuming public is insightful enough to know the difference between a face and a butt," he said in a statement. Depends on the face I guess.....


HA!


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By Randers
From Waukesha, WI
Dec 15, 2009
Rappelling in J-Tree.  Note: Completely unnecessary knife in the mouth. (Back of Turtle Rock)

I'm curious to see if this holds up in court. Regardless, looks like Jimmy is going to get a ton of orders in the mean time from the publicity.


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By tri-cameron
Dec 15, 2009


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By Wade Frank
From Littleton, CO
Dec 15, 2009
Rhys at Lake McConaughy.

Different logo, different font, and different text. I dont see the problem. Thankfully Im also not a trademark lawyer.


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By Tits McGee
From Boulder, CO
Dec 15, 2009
How I Send

This guy should be sued too!

steal your logo
steal your logo


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By Joe Huggins
From Grand Junction
Dec 15, 2009
mmmm....tree

lol omg wtf...I remember that J-Rat altered the old tsunami picture from the Chouinard catalog; renamed it "Jratonia"-"Disastrously Good Gear", and put it on T shirts. Patagonia didn't find it amusing-sent him a cease and desist letter; so he printed the letter on the back of the remaining shirts. Now there's a collectors item.
As to tnf suing the guy; seems weak, but if they are obligated to keep the copyright, I guess it makes sense.


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By Buff Johnson
Dec 15, 2009
smiley face

with the purchase of Ranier NP by the Eddie Bauer line; I was looking for some items to wear on my next excursion


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By Forestvonsinkafinger
From Iowa
Dec 15, 2009

I am curious how much TSB sales have increased since the lawsuit publicity. Funny, but unoriginal I don't think he deserves to be sued, but he is a big phony.


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By Tom Hanson
Dec 15, 2009
Climber Drawing

The North Farce?
Take a hundred dollar jacket, sew a North Farce logo on it and it sells for three hundred. What a hoot.
It's like PT Barnum said, "There's a sucker born every minute"
I wouldn't be caught dead wearing that crap.
Favorite clothing of affluent posers.
The North Farce off of Colorado Blvd and I-25 here in Denver is the only company that never paid me for guidebooks they ordered from me.
They still owe me. Cheap bastards.


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By DaveB
Dec 15, 2009
Vitruvian Man (da Vinci)

Forestvonsinkafinger wrote:
..he is a big phony.

And, not too bright. Dude should've kept it low key and under TNF's legal radar.


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By Tristan Higbee
From Cambodia
Dec 15, 2009
Me on a mixed route Crisco and I did in Rock Canyon.

I think this is freaking hilarious and I'll actually probably end up buying a hoodie. It will go well with the "North Face" fanny pack I bought in China for $3 that has the logo upside down.

Not a business I would have started, but definitely amusing.


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By Ryan Kelly
From work.
Dec 15, 2009
My kinda simian

A big phony? Needs to think of something original? You guys can't be serious. Have none of you ever laughed at a parody movie? Are you too sophisticated for that? It was a fucking joke. The kid was making fun of a company that sells over-priced clothes to a target market comprised mostly of people who rarely come closer to adverse weather than seeing it on TV. I doubt the kid was trying to come into riches with the company. It was a joke, and pretty funny in my opinion.


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By Eric Rich
From Durham, NC
Dec 15, 2009
near the summit of Yanapaccha (17,913ft) in the Cordillera Blanca of Peru

Ryan Kelly wrote:
A big phony? Needs to think of something original? You guys can't be serious. Have none of you ever laughed at a parody movie? Are you too sophisticated for that? It was a fucking joke. The kid was making fun of a company that sells over-priced clothes to a target market comprised mostly of people who rarely come closer to adverse weather than seeing it on TV. I doubt the kid was trying to come into riches with the company. It was a joke, and pretty funny in my opinion.


I couldn't have said it better myself. The North Face hasn't made a quality product in a long time, and the corporate pieces of shit who run the company have probably ran into anything other than a stiff breeze getting out of their beemers.


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By cjdrover
From Somerville, MA
Dec 15, 2009
Taken at MWV Icefest 2014.

The Article wrote:
The company threatened legal action in August after learning of Winkelmann's site. He refused, and in September offered to sell his company to The North Face for $1 million. North Face was not amused.


That's the spirit, kid.


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By Charles Vernon
From Tucson, AZ
Dec 15, 2009

I drudged this up from last year's Property Law notes:

V. Elements of trademark infringement action:
(1) That P possesses a mark;
(2) That D used the mark;
(3) That D’s use of the mark occurred “in commerce”;
(4) That D used the mark “in connection with the sale, offering for sale, distribution or advertising” of goods and services;
(5) That D used the mark in a manner likely to confuse consumers.


Seems like it will come down to proving elements (2) and (5), and that it could go either way, but I certainly don't know enough about trademark law to make any sort prediction. The mark here is upside down and missing the innermost piece, but in some ways it is still the mark. Element (5) might be a jury question (not that it'll ever get there).


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By Woodchuck ATC
Dec 15, 2009
Rock Wars, RRG, 2008

The North Farce? Take a hundred dollar jacket, sew a North Farce logo on it and it sells for three"

Ha! Try a 25 dollar Taiwan made jacket that gets the expensive logo. When superb gear companies head into the cash cow of fashion apparel, well I say screw them.


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By pfwein
Dec 15, 2009

Charles Vernon wrote:
I drudged this up from last year's Property Law notes: V. Elements of trademark infringement action: (1) That P possesses a mark; (2) That D used the mark; (3) That D’s use of the mark occurred “in commerce”; (4) That D used the mark “in connection with the sale, offering for sale, distribution or advertising” of goods and services; (5) That D used the mark in a manner likely to confuse consumers. Seems like it will come down to proving elements (2) and (5), and that it could go either way, but I certainly don't know enough about trademark law to make any sort prediction. The mark here is upside down and missing the innermost piece, but in some ways it is still the mark. Element (5) might be a jury question (not that it'll ever get there).


Not sure why you think this won't go to trial. You're probably right based on the general fact that the overwhelming majority of cases settle, but similarly silly parody cases have led to published appellate decisions:

This seems at least somewhat close to the Lardache case, which is summarized below. The full decision is at openjurist.org/828/f2d/1482

For the younguns, "Jordache" was a popular brand of designer jeans in the 80s.

"This case, a trademark infringement action brought against a manufacturer that identifies its blue jeans for larger women with a smiling pig and the word "Lardashe" on the seat of the pants, reminds us that "you can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear."1 Appellant Jordache Enterprises, Inc., alleges error in a district court decision finding no likelihood of confusion between the Jordache and Lardashe trademarks and finding no violation of New Mexico's antidilution statute. We affirm."


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By Charles Vernon
From Tucson, AZ
Dec 15, 2009

Hmm, that's not what I meant to say. Should have said "not that it'll necessarily get there." I'm a law student so I don't have a great sense of which cases tend to get to trial, especially in areas like trademark law. Chances are, as you say, that it probably won't, but who knows. This guy's lawyer sounds kinda spunky.

Reminds me a little bit of the only case we studied on the subject, PETA v. Doughney. Doughney registered the peta.org domain name for his site, "people eating tasty animals." If I recall correctly one of the chief issues there was also whether Doughney's use of the mark would tend to "confuse the public." I do recall that PETA won.


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By boydpainting
From Estes Park CO
Dec 26, 2009

I don't like the clothing of either co. But it seems TNF is just pissed at being made fun of. There should be no case, IMHO it is a different logo, and a different name. I hope this goes to trial and TNF gets laughed out of court. What a bunch of up-tight assholes.


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