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ryanmerket
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Joined: 29 Mar 2006
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Posted Wed Mar 29, 2006, 6:10am
Subject: Starbucks vs. Local Cafe
 

From: Brian Franklin (Doubleshot Coffee - AACAfe Podcast)
To: Subscribers to Doubleshot newsletter

I sense there has been some confusion.  At least, that's what the letter says that I received from Starbucks' attorneys.

It's true.  I received a letter last week informing me that I am infringing on a trademark that Starbucks has had since 2001, "Starbuck's Doubleshot."  The lawyers advised me to cease using the DoubleShot Coffee Company name, to shut down my website (http://www.DoubleShotCoffee.com), and to destroy everything I have which bears the "DoubleShot" name.  Come read the letter yourself-- it's framed and hanging on the wall, over the garbage can.

At first I frowned, then I smiled, then I laughed, then I experienced a little anger and fear, and then I went back to vengeance and irritable laughter.  As you know, I don't take kindly to people telling me what to do.  After briefly discussing the matter with my lawyer, and a gaggle of other lawyers who regularly patronize DoubleShot (my DoubleShot, not the can at the gas station), I don't think Starbucks has a leg to stand on.  Doubleshot is a generic industry term for two shots of espresso.  They have no exclusive rights to it.  But they will try to scare me and lawyer me out of business if we give them the opportunity.

So today, as a legal clarification, I would like everyone to know that we are not Starbuck's Doubleshot.  If we tricked you into coming in here, thinking you could get a can of Starbuck's DoubleShot here, please let me know.
And if you thought that $2 Tuesday was a sale on Starbuck's Doubleshot, I vehemently apologize for the confusion and ask you to please not come in here anymore because stupid people annoy me.

On the other hand, if you are brilliant enough to seek out a pound of fresh-roasted DoubleShot coffee, you will be rewarded today.  Come in anytime today for $2 Tuesday, and receive a $2 discount on every pound of oh-so-tasty-coffee you purchase.

We don't have any cans of Starbuck's Doubleshot here, but we do have the freshest coffee on the planet!

....


This was the last Doubleshot newsletter from Brian. If any of you guys have 2min, please go to this website and click "Digg" (you will need to register a new account, it is VERY easy). Once enough people click "Digg" it will be promoted to the front page of digg.com and gain A LOT of exposure.

If you would like to write a story or feature about this then please contact brian@doubleshotcoffee.com

Thank you for all of your support!
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pburbridge
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pburbridge
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Posted Wed Mar 29, 2006, 8:40am
Subject: Re: Starbucks vs. Local Cafe
 

That is crazy, *$s can't claim to own the term doubleshot, it's just rediculous... I hope this is dropped,
Peter
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GaryH
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GaryH
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Posted Wed Mar 29, 2006, 11:52am
Subject: Re: Starbucks vs. Local Cafe
 

I got this from the United Sates Patent and Trademark Office. So the "Starbucks Doubleshot" trademark belongs to Starbucks but "Doubleshot" does not. So Starbucks doesn't have a case and sounds like a bully. I did a search on the web of doubleshot and up comes Canon doubleshot camera and other uses of doubleshot. The issue might be that www.doubleshot.com belongs to Starbucks.

About two years ago Donald Trump wanted to trademark the phrase "You're fired". But a few states from NY was a small pottery store also named "You're fired" where customers could paint pottery and china which would be glazed and fired. They also got concerned about using their own "You're fired" name. Don't know the final outcome.

GaryH: trademark.jpg
(Click for larger image)
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IronBarista
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IronBarista
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Posted Wed Mar 29, 2006, 10:25pm
Subject: Re: Starbucks vs. Local Cafe
 

That was funny.  Not in a you're getting screwed funny but I can't believe *$s is doing that funny.

Out here in Belgium, they have a brewery whose line of beers is called Bush.  Well, Anheuser-Busch sued and won stating that in the US, customers might mistake Bush for Busch.  Being that Bush is between 7-12% and has flavour and colour and Busch is pee yellow, bland, and 4% (I guess), I can see how people would get confused.  Never mind that Bush costs probably 2-4 times as much as Busch.  You'll find it in the states as Scaldis.

 
I drink espresso so I can work longer,
so I can make more money,
so I can drink more espresso,
so I can work longer,
so I can make more money,
so I can drink more espresso...
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slidingmike
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Posted Thu Mar 30, 2006, 1:28pm
Subject: Re: Starbucks vs. Local Cafe
 

Yikes, amusing or not, you need legal advice.  Absolute worst case, you may be forced to put a space between "Double" and "Shot" -- but it seems like you should be able to make a case if you throw enough money at it.  Don't you love their predatory practices?
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jamesw
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Posted Fri Mar 31, 2006, 4:29am
Subject: Re: Starbucks vs. Local Cafe
 

Hardly predatory.  double shot and doubleshot sound the same, and Starbucks has spent millions promoting the identity.  the guy in Tulsa?  hmmm, maybe  $1.98

the main question is:  do they have $100,000 to fight this?  No.

and maybe lose?

give it up.  Starbucks has a busload of attorneys on staff!

right or wrong -- that's the reality.
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Jeff_K
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Posted Fri Mar 31, 2006, 6:36am
Subject: Re: Starbucks vs. Local Cafe
 

Just the cost to change all their merchandise, signs, cups, etc. could be a huge deal to a smaller business.  I can see where the big shots are coming from, but it's kind of sad that this is how the world is these days.  Sue this, sue that, we have more money than you so you lose.  I'm sure Doubleshot Coffee Company is not planning on expanding to 1,000 locations and even if they did I don't think any reasonable person would confuse the two.  Just my opinion but it seems ridiculous.
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DoubleShotCoffee
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Posted Fri Mar 31, 2006, 3:58pm
Subject: Re: Starbucks vs. Local Cafe
 

$1.98?  Showing your ignorance, man.
Doesn't matter how much one person spends building his business compared to another.  The fact is, we all do what we can to make our companies thrive, given our allotted resources.  The value of a dollar is variable.

Besides, Starbucks shouldn't be able to litigate people out of business.  That's not "fair competition."  They aren't saying that people are confusing my store with Starbucks' store.  They are saying that people are confusing my store with a small can of sweet milky coffee drink sold at the gas station.  Seriously.

Doesn't matter whether Starbucks has a busload of attorneys.  Doesn't matter whether it cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to fight them.  Should they win this battle, they might as well own the word "doubleshot"-- don't ask for one in your local café.  And the next thing they'll try to own?  Starbucks Coffee™ Company.  Mark my words.  Let this one go, and we might as well re-name the beverage we all love.

I need support from people who know better, not disparaging remarks.

Thanks.
Brian Franklin, DoubleShot Coffee Company
http://www.DoubleShotCoffee.com
AA Cafe: http://www.DoubleShotCoffee.com/AAcafe
Brian@DoubleShotCoffee.com
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dk
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Posted Fri Mar 31, 2006, 4:36pm
Subject: Re: Starbucks vs. Local Cafe
 

Brian,

You have to fight this, as if you don't even respond you will reinforce Starbucks bully tactics.  This is how Lawyers make money and a lot of it.  They go looking for possiblities of cases and infringements no matter how far fetched so they can justify their fees and continue billing away.

My advice is to find a lawyer whom is a friend that will be willing to respond to this claim and perhaps work for a set amount of money that you can work out beforehand.  The worst case scenario is you will have to change your name and you would have spent a few bucks on it with lawyers and more importantly aggravation.

You do need to respond to this.  I am not an attorney just a righteous person that roots for the underdog.  Starbucks created the specialty coffee market however it doesn't mean they have a monopoly on it.  They have a great brand name and nice looking stores however IMHO there coffee is subpar.  I'm sure Doubleshot Coffee is worlds better being artisan roasted fresh on a daily basis.

Good luck.

Dennis
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Reighlok
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Reighlok
Joined: 2 Sep 2005
Posts: 675
Location: North Dallas, Texas
Expertise: I love coffee
Posted Fri Mar 31, 2006, 6:53pm
Subject: Re: Starbucks vs. Local Cafe
 

ryanmerket Said:

If any of you guys have 2min, please go to this website and click "Digg" (you will need to register a new account, it is VERY easy). Once enough people click "Digg" it will be promoted to the front page of digg.com and gain A LOT of exposure.

Posted March 29, 2006 link

You are begging for publicity.

ryanmerket Said:

If you would like to write a story or feature about this then please contact brian@doubleshotcoffee.com

Posted March 29, 2006 link


This sounds like a press release. Once again, you are just begging for publicity.

ryanmerket Said:

Come read the letter yourself-- it's framed and hanging on the wall, over the garbage can.

Posted March 29, 2006 link

Dare I say.... begging for publicity?

Sure, being threatened to be sued sucks. And sure, Starbucks doesn't have a case. And sure, you are milking this for all it is worth to promote your business.
At the end of the day, this is just a commercial post promoting your business...... masked as "protect the little guy" story. You are just using our antistarbucks feelings for your own benefit.

Or at least that is how it seems to me.
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