“Caterpillar Inc. is trying to stop a tiny cafe from using the word cat,” reports Fast Company.
Long-time Slashdot reader UnknowingFool writes:
Caterpillar wishes to cancels the coffee shop’s trademark claiming that the trademark on shop’s apparel and footwear is too similar to theirs and would cause confusion for consumers. For reference, the coffee shop’s t-shirts and merchandise feature a cat and a cloud. This is not the first time Caterpillar has made dubious trademark claims on “Cat” or “Caterpillar”.
“Another small business faces a crazy legal challenge from a big company that should know better…” writes Inc. “There are literally hundreds of trademarks listed that include the word cat and that are intended for clothing. Without having a trademark or license, technically Cat & Cloud wouldn’t be able to sell that merchandise without permission (whether from Caterpillar or one of the many other companies with cat-related trademarks for clothing).”
The coffee shop responded by setting up a GoFundMe campaign (which is now “trending” and has so far raised $12,482) for their legal defense.
They’re arguing that Caterpillar’s efforts “would effectively set the precedent for them to OWN the word ‘cat’, making it un-useable by any business in the US.”