Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek.
What is it about lawyers these days?
Have they suddenly realized that coming over all human actually works with, well, humans?
Last week, Netflix’s lawyers sent a quite brilliant cease-and-desist email that must have made even the recipients laugh.
Now along comes another bunch of lawyers with a gripe and a heart.
The lawyers at Velcro are a little miffed that people think they own Velcro shoes and, perish the very concept, Velcro wallets.
Who needs a wallet, never mind a Velcro wallet?
The problem is that the more people ascribe every Velcro-like thing as a Velcro-thing, Velcro’s brand name gets tarnished, even though it lost its patent 40 years ago.
The technically correct terminology for most of those “scratchy, hairy fastener” things is, well, anything but Velcro. Hook and Loop is the acceptable generic term, apparently.
Or, as one quasi-lawyers calls it here: “F***ing Hook and Loop.”
There are trademark laws being broken, insist the lawyers. You have to change your behavior. Please.
Oh, I almost forgot to mention, I learned all about this from a music video the company released today.
It purports to show a group of disgruntled Velcro lawyers singing of their pain and begging you to please cease and desist.
What would Velcro be if it lost its registered trademark, the famous “circled R”? It would be just another Velcro brand.
I know they feel strongly about this, as several times throughout this marvelous anthem they swear in a sing-song voice.
Still, this isn’t without its hiccups.
“We aren’t just doing this for us,” says a (possibly) real lawyer half way through the video. “We’re doing this for all the successful brands that got so popular that people started using their brand names the wrong way.”
Oh, poppycock, sir. You’re doing it for you. You’re doing it for the very reasons these fine lawyerish actors are singing about. And it’s good.
So do please stop getting defensive or I’ll give you and your brand the hook-and-loop.
I have no idea whether this idea will stick, but you have to admire the gusto with which Velcro has tried. I can only hope the song catches on.
Naturally, I now wait for all America’s lawyers to grow a sense of humor.
I look forward to them sending letters to people they are suing that read: “Look, we know you owe our clients money. But when we met you for the deposition, you seemed like such a funny person. So why don’t we just go and watch an NBA game together (our client’s paying) and forget all about it?”
Or perhaps: “Yes, you live in Colorado and you appear to have infringed our trademark. However, I see that your governor’s name is Hickenlooper. If you can get him to change it to Hookandlooper, we’ll let you off.”
A man can dream.