Last week, WW examined the bubbling trademark battle between the city of Portland and Old Town Brewing, both of which own portions of the trademark rights to the White Stag sign at the west end of the Burnside Bridge ("Oh Deer," WW, Nov. 8, 2017). Here's what readers had to say:
Bob of Magob, via wweek.com: "So basically these guys want to be bailed out by the city of Portland, and have exclusive rights to profit off an image arguably owned by all of Portland. Let's hear more about what you've done for the community to deserve the right to exploit a Portland icon for your own personal profit."
Jerry Channel, via Facebook: "Can't local marketing stooges just leave a few things alone? Or are they so creatively bankrupt that they can't come up with anything other than an ax for the Timbers?"
SamWell, via wweek.com: "It feels to me (and I'm no lawyer, this is just my opinion) that getting the trademark for a logo that was originally someone else's is pretty silly. If the White Stag Corporation is no longer around and no longer owns their logo, it is [and] should be owned by no one. If Old Town Brewing picks it up and slaps on beer labels, fine. But it isn't 'theirs.' If PBR or Ninkasi or whoever also picks it up and slaps it on beer labels, fine.
"I wouldn't build my entire brand around someone else's brand. Seems inauthentic and cheap. Same goes for the city. Make shirts and postcards and whatever, but you don't 'own' the image. Preventing someone else from using a thing that you didn't create? Illogical."
Lisa Loving, via wweek.com: "Shouldn't the Walmart Corporation get a piece of that cash because they own the hecking White Stag clothing label the whole thing was based on? Remember the White Stag clothing company? They used to actually employ workers to manufacture goods in PDX. It would be quaint if someone did a retrospective on the real, original White Stag. They made clothing for loggers and stuff. Remember loggers?"
Mick Wagner, via wweek.com: "Trademark law can be complicated, but as a general rule, when you own trademark rights, those rights only extend as far as the products and services that you can actually demonstrate are in commerce. I suspect that Old Town Brewing will come out on top in this one, and that the city may well end up on the losing side of a lawsuit, if it keeps trying to sell rights to other beer producers."
Sonnyclips, via wweek.com: "Lord help us if Stag Beer steps up to enforce their intellectual property."
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