Sunday, May 31, 2009

Mad Mad Knobheads

I just received an e mail which is both laughable and interesting as it raises a fundamental question about Freedom of Speech:

Dear Background Artist:

I just ran across your article entitled Guest Poet: CAD Laureate, posted on May 6, 2009,, and I would like to raise an issue that is of concern to Selling Power magazine, which is the use of our trademark.

The word "Selling Power" is sometimes erroneously used as a synonym for sales effectiveness. For example you wrote: “Duffy looks like she couldn't give a hoot about all that, and so could use her position to achieve her political thrills, whilst also elevating her own selling power sky high.” We do not condone such uses of our trademark.

As a practical matter, when you describe sales effectiveness, there are a wide range of terms available such as: sales excellence, sales savvy, sales mastery, sales acumen, sales efficiency, and many more.

The reason for this letter is to educate writers like yourself that we want to protect our trademark, since we don't want to risk Selling Power being declared by the courts a generic word. Therefore we ask you not to use Selling Power as a phrase since it is our legal trademark.

We would like to receive a written acknowledgment of this letter stating that you will in the future identify Selling Power as a trademark if you should write about our magazine, and not use Selling Power as a phrase. If we do not hear from you, we will need to take further action.

Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.

All the best,

Gerhard Gschwandtner
Founder and Publisher
Selling Power
1140 International Parkway
Fredericksburg VA 22406
Office: 540-752-7000 Cell: 540-273-2555

P.S. Watch Selling Power videos online


Not only does Gschwandtner want to own the rights to two common words, but to stop others from using them in the normal course of speech, without paying him, and also to sell me stuff.

Dear Gerhard Gschwandtner

What planet are you on?


wordnerd7 said...

Des, I don’t know that you’ve ever been flamed on your own blog before but there’s a first time for everything, so … HOW DARE YOU POST THIS WITHOUT TELLING ME ABOUT IT +++IMMEDIATELY+++ ??? ………

…What better illustration of one of my favourite themes??? …Pure BLISS, starting with the lunatic’s unpronounceable name (so okay, I’ve just revealed myself as pig ignorant about German, never mind …). . . Fits perfectly with the Dilbert cartoon at the start of this post, as I hope you’ll agree … . .. and I can’t wait to see what neuroscience has to tell us about the brain structures of specialists in sales and marketing.

… And THANK-YOU, I followed the link to the Harriet blog and saw that you challenged the brute William Logan … Suddenly it’s raining knights and jousting all over …. . ha :) ! … heavenly …

Eoinín said...

Good to see this is an across the board spam campaign!

We got the same automated response over at our blog, and even a personal response after we replied. What a tool.