Chances are only the most fervent of whiskey drinkers has heard of The Wild Geese Company. At least that appears to be the bet spirits Goliath Barcardi was making when it recently launched a new “untameable” advertising campaign that the much smaller boutique distillery claims infringes on its trademark rights, Buzzfeed reported.
Wild Geese holds the trademark to the “untamed” slogan, and, in a recently filed complaint with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, claimed Barcardi’s new campaign too closely resembles its own and violates its intellectual property. Though trademark fights are common in the spirits, beverage, and other industries, Wild Geese is taking its dispute with Bacardi to another level. Andre Levy, the chairman of parent company, Avalon Group, has been meeting with congressional staffers and has hired a lobbying firm to push for a change to the laws dictating U.S. intellectual property litigation. Namely, Levy is sick of “the little guys” having to back down in lawsuits with major brand competitors that have infinitely more resources to throw at a lawsuit and wants to level the playing field.
A representative for Bacardi declined comment for this story.
“It’s a dangerous precedent Bacardi is trying to set by using a name and trying to have people associate it with their product,” Levy said. “The problem that presents to entrepreneurs is it really creates a wild West scenario with intellectual property. Because they’re better known, they’re saying there will be no confusion between the two trademarks.”
See the full story on Buzzfeed.com.