As collectors from around the world leave sunny Miami after the Annual Art Basel, a festival which allows local artists to showcase their talents and local flavor to prominent collectors and artists from around the world. Unfortunately some festival goers leave with more than they are willing to pay for pilfering intellectual property and violating copyright laws brazenly. As was the case a few years back when teen clothier American Eagle Outfitters used artist Aholsniffsglue’s trademark eye logo in one of their ads resulting in a civil lawsuit and ultimately ending up in federal court disputing intellectual property rights. In that instance, the little guy won. Now, another behemoth, Bustelo coffee has outright stolen intellectual property from a local marketer, JennyLee Molina.
Based on the Cuban culture’s tradition of having a “cafecito” at around 3:00 PM, the idea took on a life on its own when she strategically decided to unify the online community to share their 3:05 PM cafecitos online in appreciation of Miami’s shared love of the afternoon Cafecito. The campaign exploded in an outpouring of coffee devotees sharing their afternoon pick me up online.
Shamefully, her trademarked “3:05 Cafecito Time” campaign has been used without permission by the coffee giant Bustelo, property of the JM Smucker company. 3:05 Cafecito Time pop ups began to crop up in cities like New York, and Los Angeles, all from Bustelo sponsored events without her knowledge or permission. Following an influx of congratulations messages from bloggers and creative all over the union, Molina reached out to Bustelo regarding the copyright infringement, asking only to be given creative credit, and Bustelo refused. Now, Molina will need the aid of an intellectual property attorney in what is sure to be a messy civil lawsuit. Her trademarked campaign is widely recognized throughout the community, with mayor Tomas Regalado declaring 3:05 PM as Cafecito time in the city of Miami.
How can you protect yourself from being robbed of your intellectual property?
Sadly, intellectual property protection is difficult at best, without the counsel of a civil law attorney. Intellectual property law is complex and artists, marketers, and those in the creative field are often left with little or no protections. Contact a skilled civil lawsuit lawyer who can navigate the murky waters of intellectual property, copyright, and trademark law on your behalf. Copyright protection cases are often challenging as they require a civil attorney who has the ability to analyze and synthesize complex legal and factual materials, as well as the less tangible as is the case with creative disputes.
At the Gallardo law firm, we pride ourselves in fighting to protect the rights of those who are victims of intellectual property theft. No matter how big the aggressor is, we won’t blink an eye when it comes to defending your intellectual property.
Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but in the case of 3:05 Cafecito Time, there is nothing flattering about stealing someone’s intellectual property. Hire a civil litigation attorney to fight on your behalf.