Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Tito's Tacos to change name following trademark tangle; Brattleboro Reformer, 10/3/16

Robert Audette, Brattleboro Reformer; Tito's Tacos to change name following trademark tangle:
"Victoroff requested that the Reformer "immediately remove the aforementioned infringing material from its website, immediately notify the source of the infringing content of this notice, inform them of their duty to remove the infringing material immediately, and notify them to cease any further posting of infringing material to The Brattleboro Reformer News website in the future."
The Reformer has declined to take down the picture on First Amendment grounds.
In a response, Fredric D. Rutberg, the president of New England Newspapers Inc., which owns the Reformer, refused to remove the picture from the Reformer's website.
"The photo in question depicts a local food vendor whose sign identifies his business as Tito's Tacos," wrote Rutberg. "While this use of the name Tito's Tacos may indeed infringe on your client's registered trademark, it is our opinion that the photo in question does not constitute an infringement of your client's trademark. At best it is a 'fair use' of trademarked material."
"Tito's greatly respects your newspaper's First Amendment rights of free speech," Victoroff responded in an email to Rutberg, "but the use of its trademarked name in the [photo and news story] seriously dilutes and erodes its trademark. ... Every day the Tito's Tacos family must defend and protect its trademark rights from death by 1,000 cuts or risk losing its name and trademark.""

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