Thursday, 29 May 2008

Recycling Brands Lands Tinny in Trouble

Despite every news item talking about alternative energy, recycling and how plastic bags are evil, an American engineer who recycles empty Heineken® beer containers into a useable lightweight cooking pots has been told to stop, and to pay "reasonable" damages in the sum of $4,750. According to the letter posted on the site, the owner was sent a "cease and desist" letter prior to this, and he did not. Link

Now, many, many cans and bottles are designed to be easily identifiable from a distance. Just look at the shape of branded cola bottles, or soft drinks bottles. No doubt the designs are covered by intellectual property laws. Will H® be happy with merely the removal of their registered trademarked name, or will the want all photos that allow the cans to be identified as there IP removed from the site and videos too.

I tried to read the Heineken® terms and conditions on their web site, but I have to verify that I am over 18 to visit the site (they state that is the legal drinking age: in fact, in the UK, it is 18 and over).  Link to the mean green machine.

Me, haven't drunk that lager since I was an 18+ year old kid.

Oh, and if you want to do the maths (that's "math" if you are from the USA), I found a shop selling the 24oz beer cans at $2.29. Thus, H® reckon that Tinny's recycling of their named product (in his wind-powered workshop) has damaged them to the tune of 2,074 cans of lager, or 2,489 pints.

I drunk from here at the weekend:


It is better for you.


ps: there's a discussion as to whether the legal email is a scam or genuine in Tinny's post.

pps; I hope it hasn't delayed him completing my order cos I'm dying to try the stove.

pps: will they extradite people for this?


Sarah said...

What the heck? Oh to Tinny's site! This if real could be a huge issue to cottage gear makers of stoves. But...I wonder what grounds they have to stand on? It is after all a product bought and used. I would hedge it is over using their trademarked name more likely.

Anonymous said...

Being in Marketing, I can see why they would want to protect their trademark and name. That's pretty much standard procedure.

Their web site is scary though. That's the way to make people feel welcome, drop them into a vat of legalspeak right away.