Thursday, August 23, 2012

Dr. Witt, why does the University of Alabama hate cookies?

image The University’s agent for licensing has sent a cease and desist order to Mary’s Cakes and Pastries, a small mom-and-pop bakery in Northport.

The letter came from Collegiate Licensing Co. in Atlanta, which has a contract with UA to provide licensing services for the university’s trademarked items.

The letter also demanded “that you advise us in writing of your compliance ... and furnish us a list describing each item manufactured and/or sold by you which bears the Marks of the University and each item that you presently have in inventory.

“Include the number and sales price of each item as well as profits earned. This information will be used to determine the amount of damages and legal costs due for your unauthorized use of the Marks,” the letter said.

Are you serious?

Here’s hoping that some grownups arrive in the office this morning and get control of this ridiculous situation. Protecting trademarks is one thing. Hounding businesses in your community for expressing the pride that comes with being part of the Bama Nation is another.

Leave Ms. Cesar alone.

UPDATE: The University has come to its senses.

Look, we understand the trademark issue and what damage could be done by allowing anyone and everyone to abuse the university's intellectual property. But this is not rocket science. The bakery and other small businesses in the community should be able to license the school’s trademarks at a rate that’s reasonable.

All they have to do is establish criteria for small operations like this and as long as the criteria aren’t arbitrarily applied, Mary’s Cakes and Joe’s Ribs can support the school that means so much to their community.

A community that, in the end, the school itself relies on so heavily to generate fan support and steadily rolling turnstiles.

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Andrew in Alabama said...

Ridiculous. We stop there all the time and pick up cookies before games. She is a sweet lady and her cookies are awesome.

I hope the goon lawyers working for UA get their heads out of their posteriors and realize that antagonizing your fans is no way to do business.

Jim Doggett said...

I agree that some intuition needs to prevail here. We should aggressively attack any outsider seeking to profit from the success of the greatest college football brand. But we should not apply these rules to the local die hards who have been with us from the beginning. We must be more sophisticated in our policing of trademark policies.

Perry said...

Good sense has prevailed!!