Chicago Cubs: With Success Comes Trademark Lawsuit Against Street Vendors
Andrei Mincov's commentary on the original article
While I completely disagree with the entitlement spirit of the article (I have been a fan of X all of my life and I'm so used to being able to get X bypassing the much more expensive official channels, I am entitled to this, and whoever is taking is taking steps to limit my ability to enjoy X in this fashion, is evil), I agree that Cubs may have a problem with having allowed the street vendors to openly infringe on Cubs' trademark rights for so long. This is called 'estoppel.' Cubs may be found to be estopped from going after those vendors who through Cubs' former policies may have reasonably come to believe that Cubs are OK with vendors' selling counterfeit swag. Cubs are facing a lose-lose situation. If they do nothing, the value of their brand goes down because it becomes less and less enforceable every day. If they go after the vendors now, there will not only be a backlash from people like the author of the article, there will also be a risk that a few vendors would actually lawyer up and take this case all the way to the courtroom and prove that Cubs should not be allowed to suddenly turn around and change their mind about what's OK and what's not OK. My prediction: Cubs will use their resources to settle with those stubborn vendors and avoid an open trial at all costs.