New York Personal Injury Law Blog » First Amendment


December 11th, 2007

Best Buy Sends Out Nastygram To Blog Reporting On Parody

Best Buy clearly doesn’t like being the butt of a joke. We know this because a group called Improv Everywhere sent about 80 people into one of their New York stores wearing blue polo shirts to stand around. They did not claim to be employees. They just stood around dressed like them. For yucks. Now the lawyer letters are flying.

According to an extensive write up of the escapade, “The reaction from the employees was pretty typical as far as our missions go. The lower level employees laughed and got a kick out of it while the managers and security guards freaked out.”

Then, when the stunt was over, they sold shirts. With a parody of the Best Buy logo, seen here above right. So Best Buy sent their first cease and desist letter.

Then someone else blogged about it, at a site called Laughing Squid. And then they got a cease and desist letter for reporting the story, claiming trademark and copyright infringement, which letter they have conveniently put up at their site. And just for the record, the one they got was much fancier than the one that Avis sent to me for using their logo.

Someone ought to direct those folks to that little thing called the First Amendment.

(And to save the Best Buy legal department some time, let me say that I don’t sell the shirts, I’m just reporting the story for the other attorneys in the blawgosphere that are interested.)

(hat tip: The Consumerist)

Addendum 12/12/07Best Buy has apologized for the cease and desist letter to Laughing Squid.

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