Thursday, March 13, 2008

We are Totally Screwed/Sued

EDIT: This post has to do with the our clan when we were the Knights of Columbus. We have since changed our name to the Knights of Cydonia.

Alright, so here is the deal. This is the letter that was sent to the groups email address.

To Whom It May Concern:

As counsel for the Knights of Columbus (“KOFC”), I wish to advise
you, in the event you are not aware, that KOFC is a Catholic men’s
fraternal benefit society which was formed to render financial aid to
members and their families. KOFC owns several service marks and
certification marks that are registered in the U.S. Patent & Trademark
Office which include "THE KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS" (Fed. Reg. Nos. 1,634,365
and 1,596,950) and K OF C & DESIGN (Fed. Reg. Nos. 1,589,315 and 1,589,536)
(collectively, the “Marks”).

I have recently become aware of your website within which you
tastelessly make use of the Marks identified above. Please be advised that
the KOFC has never authorized your organization or "team" to make use of
the Marks identified above. To the contrary, KOFC strongly objects to your
organization's use of the Marks in any way. Such unauthorized use of the
Marks constitutes trademark infringement, trade dress, false designation
of origin and dilution in violation of federal and state statutory law, as
well as common law. In order to protect its valuable property rights, KOFC
demands that your organization, its affiliates, distributors, employees and
any other entity or individual acting in concert with it:

(1) immediately cease and desist from all further use, manufacture,
marketing, promotion, distribution and sale of all products and services in
connection with the Mark(s), including without limitation, any such use on
your website;
(2) provide immediate assurances to KOFC that your organization will
refrain from future use, manufacture, marketing, promotion, distribution
and sale of all products and services in connection with the Marks; and
(3) destroy any and all images, webpages, photos, decals, products or any
other items that feature the Marks that are currently used on your website.

Please send me written confirmation within seven (7) days from the
date of this message that your organization has complied with the demands
set forth above, or we will be forced to take such further action as we
deem advisable to protect our valuable rights. Please also be advised that
we reserve the right to resort to judicial remedies (including an
injunction, claims for lost profits, damages and attorneys’ fees) if you do
not respond to the requests set forth in this letter or if additional
violations are discovered.

Very truly yours,

Joseph A. Niglio
Knights of Columbus
One Columbus Plaza
New Haven, CT 06510
Phone Number and Fax Number Removed

And here is the response I just sent. It's pretty terrible and I just threw it together because it's really frustrating me. I feel like this guy thinks we are trying to make money of the Catholic organization. I am not saying I wouldn't be willing to make money, but I don't think a casual Halo blog is going to do it.

Mr. Niglio,

I hope you don’t think we were trying to infringe on the Knights of Columbus trademark. In fact, the origin of our name had nothing to do with your fraternal organization, from our perspective. It comes from a quote from the 2004 movie Anchorman. Actor, Will Ferrell’s character says “Knights of Columbus, that hurt!” We thought it was a funny and an appropriate exclamation for a group of teens that play video games. The quote is at the bottom of all our blog posts and we have been using the name as college kids playing video games ever since.

As for your accusations that we are using the name for “manufacture[ing], marketing, promotion, distribution and sale of all products and services,” they are simply ridiculous. We are not selling any product or service and we are certainly not making any money off this and nor do we plan to. This is simply the name that we gave ourselves when we play video games online and this blog is simply a way for friends to stay in touch. I emphasize the word blog because this is not a commercial website and it is simply a place where friends can post their thoughts about video games.

No reasonable person could ever confuse this blog with your organization, nor does this blog dilute your trademark in anyway. A blog that is seen by at most a dozen people does not weaken the name of your worldwide organization of almost 2 million members. We do not appear on the first 50 pages of Google when searching for “Knights of Columbus.” We are simply a handful of college students that enjoy playing and discussing video games, nothing more.

We have no problem putting a disclaimer on every page saying that we are in NO WAY affiliated with your organization and/or any other wording that you choose. Any use of the logo that resembles your crest will be removed and deleted from everything associated with the blog.

However, asking us to delete our entire blog is unreasonable. We hope you will be rational with your response and we look forward to hearing from you.

Essentially this the "real" Knights of Columbus (who is to say who came first/sarcasm) are saying that we are tasteless. Also, if any of you guys have been manufacturing marketing, promoting, distributing and/or selling products, I am not mad at you, but please share some of those massive profits we have been making.

We have 7 days... well 6 now, to decide what to do. I say we fight! We got a lawyer (well a person that may or may not be in law school, I haven't seen any physical proof yet) and endless amounts of cash (Squatting Bear). I say we take this to the Supreme Court! The current SCOTUS has always been tough on trademark holders... oh shit, wait, I think it's the other way around.

Also, if anyone was planning on joining the Catholic Church, I think you are out of luck. Sorry.


Anonymous said...

I told you in my e-mail yesterday we need to change our name. I stand by that decision, 100%.

Anonymous said...

grow a pair josey

Daymonster said...

Why is everyone going anonymous these days.

Pablito Neal said...

i didn't want to say that to josey directly, he'd beat me up

Daymonster said...

It's funny that Josey can say something anonymously and we can tell it was him

Daymonster said...

No one gave any love to the inclined plane... inclined plans suck to walk up, that's for sure.

Pete said...

lol josey did u leave your comment as anonymous because you are afraid of getting sued? it would seem there is about a 95 % chance as no more than 5 % of your previous comments have been left under anonymous.

Pablito Neal said...

everyone who votes change clan name must also offer suggestions for a new name