We can have just about anything delivered to our doorstep these days. In many places that have legalized cannabis for medical or recreational, some companies deliver cannabis. One of those companies is coming under fire because they have been utilizing business aspects that were very similar to that of the reputable logistics company, UPS.
Recently UPS filed a lawsuit against UPS420, THCPlant, and United Pot Smokers. They are doing so as they have been utilizing misleading advertisements and brand identifiers that are more than just similar to that of the United Parcel Services trademarks. The most severe charges you could imagine is against the United Pot Smokers brand. This “UPS” utilizes a logo that pretty much mirrors that of the original UPS’ well-known brand identifiers in addition to the same distinct acronym.
The Details of the Lawsuit
United Pot Smokers utilizes wording on their websites such as “operational courier” and “nationwide logistics expeditor”. Both of which could easily cause confusion between the two companies for someone not aware. The filed lawsuit is asking for compensation for damages. It is also demanding that the website’s being operated by these entities get transferred to the United Parcel Services intellectual portfolio. The UPS team offered an easy way out for United Pot Smokers with more than one cease and desist warning. However, the lawsuit comes after they ignored these warnings and continued to capitalize off UPS.
During an original hearing on February 15th, a judge denied the United Parcel Services request for a temporary restraining order. The defendants had until February 28th to respond to the UPS allegations before the matter will be heard in court on March 7th. This isn’t the first time that a cannabis-related company has faced a lawsuit for copyright or trademark infringement. There have been several ranging including Tapatio Hot Sauce, Toys R Us, Hershey’s chocolates and more. As the legalization of cannabis progresses, it may be time for businesses to make themselves stand apart from any existing reputable brands. This includes not copying or even using wordplay upon someone else’s intellectual property because it’s just bad business.