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It looks like Monster Cable is at it again.
With their reputation of unleashing their legal teams on any company that dares use the word "Monster" in their name, and their recent attempt to intimidate the wrong guy back in April, it now appears that Monster Cable feels that a Miniature Golf company is infringing on their trademark.
According to this editorial on Audioholics, as well as stories from May 2008 in Bloomberg News, and the Providence Business News, the owners of Monster Mini Golf have been battling with the home theater cable and accessories maker over the "Monster" name as it pertains to kids putting red, orange, and purple balls through windmills and other obviously non-home-theater-related obstacles since 2006.
After doing some digging, I found a site that contains the legal filings pertaining to Monster Cable Products v. Monster Mini Golf, et al. (Case #2:2008cv01037 filed in the Trademark Office of the California Eastern District Court) Feel free to look through them if you're so inclined.
I'm not a lawyer, but it doesn't take much common sense (perhaps the two have nothing to do with each other in cases like this), but I don't think that there is much confusion over Monster Cable the home theater products company and Monster Mini-Golf the, um, mini-golf company.
According to a letter from Christina Vitagliano, Founder of Monster Mini Golf, to Audioholics, Monster Cable is looking for some pretty extreme licensing terms to use the "Monster mark" for their business, including an up-front payment of $80,000 plus $3,000 per franchise location added after settlement.
A mediation meeting between the two parties was scheduled to take place yesterday, so it will be interesting to see what, if anything, came out of it.
Monster Cable should be ashamed of itself for bringing such a frivolous lawsuit in the first place, and forcing this business to incur nearly $100,000 in legal fees to fight them. I'm glad to hear that they are fighting them, however, and maybe continued coverage of legal bullying like this will start to impact Monster Cable's business of, you know, making home theater cables and accessories.
While Monster Cable does make decent stuff that doesn't have to cost an arm and a leg (although they have plenty of stuff that can require the loss of several limbs), there are other alternatives out there. If you disagree with their actions against this company and many others, feel free to check out alternatives from companies like Blue Jeans Cable, DVI Gear, Monoprice, and many others.
- Monster Cable at it again, sues mini-golf company -- EngadgetHD
- Monster Cable sues miniature golf courses -- AVS Forum Member Comments
- Monster Cable Sues Monster Mini Golf For, You Guessed It, Name Confusion -- Gizmodo
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