Netflix sets the bar with humour-filled trade mark cease and desist letter
Written by Ellis Sweetenham on 29 September 2017« Return to Reading Room
When a trade mark owner is made aware that another party is potentially infringing their brand, one of the first steps they take in order to prevent any damage being done, is send a cease and desist letter.
These are normally serious in tone, in order to make clear to the potentially infringing party that the trade mark owner is serious about protecting their intellectual property.
Normally, a cease and desist letter would not be news-worthy, however Netflix have seen possibly the best cease and desist letter in order to protect their trade marks.
The letter centred around hit show, Stranger Things.
Having gained popularity in a big way when streamed on Netflix, it is no wonder someone is trying to cash in on this fame.
The receiver of the cease and desist letter was a Chicago pop up bar, named The Upside Down, which had themed itself on Stranger Things. While the bar was only planning on opening for 6 weeks, during the time in which the series’ second season was being aired, they did not seek approval from Netflix to use the branding as a theme.
When Netflix discovered the bar’s use, they could have gone down the line of previous cease and desist letters, but chose to inject a bit of humour.
Ensuring there can be no claims of trade mark bullying’, Netflix sent the owners of the bar a humour filled letter that thanked them for their support for the show but asked for the bar not to extend its run and contact Netflix if they plan on doing something similar.
The letter has also caught the attention of fans for including multiple references to characters and phrases from the show.
Netflix has managed to achieve the best of both worlds, not only have them managed to remain in control of their brands but has also ensure that they cannot received any negative publicity from the letter, no matter how hard news organisations try to spin it.
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