Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Trademark this ™ (part 473)

The federal Conservative Party ™ can't have it both ways.   It is going after a retired university professor who is using the party's logo within an ad banner on her website asking why it is Canada severely restricts and in the vast majority of cases outright bans the use of asbestos ™ in this country -- while continuing to provide corporate welfare (i.e. tax write-offs) to the asbestos industry in Québec.

Tim Harper (no relation to PMS ™, I presume) writes about this today in the Toronto Star ™ -- and as he notes, the Cons may have met their match.   Proving the adage that any publicity is good, the issue of asbestos has hit the top of the agenda as well as it should.   Any time someone manages to write the script for talking points and it's not the government dictating to Sun TV ™ and CTV ™ what is news today is a good day in my opinion.

It's worth pointing out the husband (Robert Keyserlingk) of the woman in question, Michaela, was a man who lived an extremely healthy lifestyle (he ran marathons and never smoked) but died from complications of mesothelioma, a result of his inhaling asbestos from a summer stint on board a Canadian Navy ship.   For her part she has said she would take down the so-called offending "C" if only someone in the government would explain to her the hypocritical stand the feds have taken.   She does concede the trademark infringement but points out that on "the human level" PMS has nothing to stand on.

Yet Team Harper seemingly has no issue with pro-life groups using the legally trademarked logo with the stylized Canada and maple leaf flag on its protest banners at the annual marches on Parliament Hill.

Nor does it seem that it's entirely willing to go after the multiple blatant misuses of the Red Cross ™ trademark in the public and private spheres, such trademark which along with the Red Crescent and the compromise "Red Crystal" have protection above all other trademarks in Canada -- even though our national Red Cross Society has a snitch page and lawyers more than prepared to go after offenders from the most innocent to the most blatant.   (The only people not related to the Red Cross movement who are allowed to use the symbol are military medics.)

The crazy thing?   Robert was a Conservative Party supporter -- in fact, he was chair of the Ottawa Centre district, the district that includes Parliament.

This is totally different from the Red Cross ™ (which of course should be protected)   This also isn't Barbie ™ (the name of a doll as well as a restaurant chain) or even Mikes ™ (a vodka lemonade brand and several unrelated restaurant chains, all of which seem to have an informal look the other way approach to the situation).   Heck it's not even Ray's Pizza ™ in New York City (there are about 46 of them at last count, none of which are related to each other in any sense).   The next thing we'll are networks getting sued for using the Cons' logo (as well as that of all other parties) in their newscasts.

Rather than threaten a lawsuit, Canada's Not So New Government ™ should just admit they're wrong about asbestos ™, shut down the mines ™ once and for all, and find another way to employ the people left in the Eastern Townships ™ that still work in the pits

Trademark ™ that ™, PMS ™ ! ™

(PS  In other news, CBC ™ has gotten a one year reprieve to go all-digital in 18 smaller markets -- another victory for the little guy especially in rural areas where CBC is all there is with rabbit ears.  After all, the CBC is the only government owned company that the feds can't directly manipulate its editorial content over, without facing repercussions from we the people.   It also gives Mother a chance to sell the soon to be vacated bandwidth to the highest bidder and not necessarily whom the CRTC deems appropriate -- the corp could use the money.)

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