Porsche wants to sue me! Help! - Page 4 - Rennlist - Porsche Discussion Forums

928 Forum
Sponsored by:
Sponsored by: 928 Specialists

Porsche wants to sue me! Help!

Old 12-09-2014, 12:50 PM
Rennlist Member
drooman's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: CT and FL
Posts: 996

Ferrari is extremely aggressive in this manner...Makes the Porsche lawyers look tame
drooman is offline  
Old 12-09-2014, 01:02 PM
dr bob
Chronic Tool Dropper
Lifetime Rennlist
dr bob's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Bend, Oregon
Posts: 17,492

As Ed suggests, protection of brands, identity, copyrights and trademarks is extremely important to the holders. When you buy a car these days, you essentially buy a license to advertise that car's brand for the manufacturer. Seems fair. IP lawyers will remind us that holders must evenly and thoroughly enforce their rights to all potential offenders, or risk having their property fall into the abyss of public domain. Coca-Cola, Kleenex, Band-Aid, etc. are quick to remind everyone that a cola isn't a Coke unless they sell it. A Porsche business is not really a Porsche business unless they own it or license their name to it.

Porsche tells us that it's OK to have events that celebrate their brand and the brand loyalty they have built through decades of hard work. Give credit to their trade names in your event promotion, no problem, so long as you include a disclaimer that you are not Porsche. Use their name in your business name, and they have a problem -- Someone might mistake your business for theirs.

In that previous round of internet trademark C&D actions over a decade ago now, we lost "Porschelist" and "Porschefans" website names, superseded by Rennlist. I remember the stink they put up over PorscheLynn's (sp?) web presence, even though that was in fact the legal name of the holder. Bodywork was, um, different enough that they backed off for a while.
dr bob is offline  
Old 12-09-2014, 02:24 PM
martinss's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Palgrave, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 700

As Curt notes, trademark holders are required to defend their Mark or else risk loosing it. Could you imagine the cost to Porsche (or VW) if they loose their Mark and anyone can use it with impunity - competitors, detractors, knock-off vendors and the like? Issuing a C&D letter is only the start of a demonstrable defense - they have to follow through as well even if they seem to be beating up on the little guy.

It may not feel right, but it is the way the laws on trademarks are structured globally. In those countries where trademarks are not currently enforceable (think China for example, though they now support patents if not trademarks) misuse leads to all kinds of market confusion that the unscrupulous benefit from. I'm sure you have heard of genuine OEM parts in branded boxes that are actually cheap knock-offs.
martinss is offline  
Old 12-09-2014, 02:35 PM

Basic Site Sponsor

GregBBRD's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Anaheim
Posts: 9,456

When I started my business, in 1975, my original name was "Precision Porsche".

That lasted for about 5 years, when I got a friendly letter asking me to change my name. I ignored that letter, for a year. That letter came from "Luke Baer", which looked like a 3rd grader signed it. He was simply "Council". The next letter was not so friendly...signed, once again, by "Luke Baer", now vice president and head council. The signature was completely different. Very fluid and elegant....much more confident and intimidating.

I figured out that they had an entire office full of attorneys that got paid regardless if I fought them, or not.

Changed my name.

Another shop (in Southern California) "Porsche Straus" fought them and won, however, it was very expensive. (Their claim was that they had their name for many years and should be able to retain it.)

I understood Porsche's point, entirely, and had no ill feelings. It's their name. They want to protect it and make sure that people know who is Porsche and who is not.

While this thread is very old, the current guy that brought it back from the dead really only has one choice...change the name of his business.
greg brown

714 879 9072
[email protected]

There's a huge difference between great products and good marketing.

I'm all about the great products.
GregBBRD is offline  
Old 12-09-2014, 02:40 PM
No wide loads, please!
Lifetime Rennlist
Tony's Avatar
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Las Vegas
Posts: 13,099

Originally Posted by Tarek307 View Post
Holly thread resurrect lol, i'm going through this now with my business, CarreraMotorSports guess i'll also have to submit..seems big dog eat little dog ...
Change teh C to a K and tell them its the name of your Dog...the team racing mascot or somehting.
Tony is offline  
Old 12-09-2014, 02:49 PM
Rennlist Member
bureau13's Avatar
Join Date: May 2014
Location: South Florida
Posts: 2,975

Or go with "Portia"...
bureau13 is offline  
Old 12-09-2014, 03:20 PM
Rennlist Member
linderpat's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 10,047

Originally Posted by WyattsRide View Post
Expect a C&D letter to you soon Ed!

spit my coke through my nose! (or rather my Coca-Cola(R)).
I'm okay though, Rick, because my name is not a commercial name but a personal name
linderpat is offline  
Old 12-09-2014, 03:31 PM
Rennlist Member
rnixon's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Los Altos, CA
Posts: 753

Originally Posted by Tarek307 View Post
Holly thread resurrect lol, i'm going through this now with my business, CarreraMotorSports guess i'll also have to submit..seems big dog eat little dog ...
Well, AFAIK, Porsche took the name from the Carrera Panamericana, so that seems a bit rich for them to claim motorsport ownership of the name. It is a Spanish word too, so they can't reasonably (IMO) claim to own it. Other companies do use it too.

They can afford a lot more in legal fees than I assume you can though.
rnixon is offline  
Old 12-09-2014, 07:20 PM
dr bob
Chronic Tool Dropper
Lifetime Rennlist
dr bob's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Bend, Oregon
Posts: 17,492

Literal translation of "carrera" from Spanish is "run", while common-to-most translation of "Carrera" from German to US English is a Porsche model designation reference. Used in the context of an automotive business, the reference to the Porsche model name is probably closest to the original intent when the business name was selected.

In the end, we all make decisions about whether the good will associated with our business name is worth a legal fight. Little guys, even when they have a reasonable expectation of success, roll over early in the face of potentially daunting legal costs. Fight it for a year or two and a couple $hundredk, and if you reach a settlement you are still on the hook for all your own costs. Bigger companies have a lot more to protect than the little guy, and must defend against lots of potentially-infringing little guys. Every one of them they find, in fact.
dr bob is offline  
Old 12-10-2014, 07:34 AM
Rennlist Member
Dave928S's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Tasmania, Australia
Posts: 4,585

I wonder what they think about this brand ... http://www.roschepaper.com.au/ ... which I saw in the bathroom at my dentists a few weeks ago. I immediately thought 'holy crap' (pun intended), Porsche make toilet paper!
Attached Images  
Dave928S is offline  
Old 12-10-2014, 12:15 PM
Rennlist Member
RKD in OKC's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: In a tizzy
Posts: 4,966

Even the Porsche Club of America had to negotiate the use of the Porsche in it's name AND has strict rules of how they may use both the name and logo. If the club sells something with the Porsche name or logo, they can only sell that item to club members.

Porsche does not only sell cars, they have an entire business of doing product design for themselves and other companies, under the name Porsche Design.
RKD in OKC is offline  
Old 12-10-2014, 03:29 PM
dr bob
Chronic Tool Dropper
Lifetime Rennlist
dr bob's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Bend, Oregon
Posts: 17,492

So it wasn't much more than a decade ago that two of the Gallo brothers (Ernest and Julio) decided that brother Joseph's sausage business was infringing on their trade name and the immense goodwill that was associated with their wine business. That of course had been built on such famous swills as "Thunderbird" and "Night Train", as well as their "premium" brand names. Very interesting trial followed, and the wine brothers lost. Turns out that it's OK to eat salami slices with cheap red wine.

Want to use "porsche" as part of your brand identity? Make sure it's your actual family name, and that there is no reference or relationship to any of the present (or future?) products or services they might offer. Or have deep pockets and a crack legal staff available.
dr bob is offline  
Old 12-10-2014, 06:36 PM
Jim Devine
Rennlist Member
Jim Devine's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Sacramento, Ca.
Posts: 1,162

Quite a while ago Honda went after shops that had Honda in the name. I knew one owner who became pen pals with their legal dept. He would respond with alternatives and ask if that would suit them knowing it wouldn't. Went back & forth several times before they accepted his new proposed name change.
His reason for dragging it out with back & forth letters was he wanted to get past the deadline date to make changes in the yellow page ad.
That gave him another year for him to let his customers know there would be a name change.
Pretty smart.
Jim Devine is offline  
Old 12-10-2014, 07:40 PM
Cameron's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 1,423

Originally Posted by dr bob View Post
Literal translation of "carrera" from Spanish is "run".
Actually, to run is 'correr' in spanish. 'Carrera' is race, or in a professional sense 'career'. In the case of Porsche, I am sure they mean 'race'.

Although Spanish is not my first language, I am fluent. I also verified it with my hot Colombian wife.
Cameron is offline  
Old 12-11-2014, 11:59 AM
Rennlist Member
SMTCapeCod's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Mechanochondriacism
Posts: 4,623
Default punt it


Squinting, but seeing no 928 content in this resurrection...
SMTCapeCod is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Quick Reply: Porsche wants to sue me! Help!

Contact Us About Us Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

© 2019 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.
  • Ask a Question
    Get answers from community experts
Question Title:
Your question will be posted in: