Thursday, August 9, 2007

Sounds evil, until you keep reading...

So there's this headline:

Johnson & Johnson Sues Red Cross Over Symbol
Sounds evil, right? I salivate at the opportunity to rip J&J for corporate greed and evil, picking on a little non-profit like that. But, then there's the rest of the article:

The two had shared the symbol amicably for more than 100 years — Johnson & Johnson on its commercial products and the American Red Cross as a symbol of its relief efforts on foreign battlefields and in disasters like floods and tornadoes.

From time to time, the American Red Cross sold products bearing the symbol as fund-raising efforts. Jeffrey J. Leebaw, a spokesman for Johnson & Johnson, said the company had no objection to that.

But in 2004, the American Red Cross began licensing the symbol to commercial partners selling products at retail establishments. According to the lawsuit, those products include humidifiers, medical examination gloves, nail clippers, combs and toothbrushes.
Sorry, J&J. And more:
Mr. Crisan said it was not clear how far the American Red Cross wanted to go in licensing the symbol for commercial purposes, noting that the red cross was a trademark of Johnson & Johnson before the American Red Cross was officially chartered. Mr. Crisan said that some of the items being sold under licensing agreements by the American Red Cross seemed to compete directly with products sold by J.& J.
What planet does the Red Cross live on that it thinks this is a legitimate practice? And Mark Emerson, president of the ARC says:
“The Red Cross products that J.& J. wants to take away from consumers and have destroyed are those that help Americans get prepared for life’s emergencies,” Mr. Everson said. “I hope that the courts and Congress will not allow Johnson & Johnson to bully the American Red Cross.”
Yes, Mr. Emerson. Nobody else makes disaster kits except for the companies to which you license J&J's commercial logo. Americans are gonna die because they can't buy products with your license. Right.

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