First Amendment 1, Wal-Mart 0

In case you missed it, there was quite a spectacular discussion on my post from the other day that included a youtube video by Phil DeFranco urging everyone to boycott Wal-Mart.

A local blogger who was a personal acquaintance of mine, completely shit the bed and accused me of “ignorance,” stating that it was “Sad when people criticize a company they know nothing about.”

*ahem*

He also complains that none of my Wal-Mart posts contain any source information or facts to back up my arguments. Never minding the fact that the post he was commenting on clearly contained a link to a CNN article about the poor woman that is being forced to hand over her $470,000 settlement to a company that makes 90 BILLION dollars every quarter.

In the ensuing ruckus, he managed to clearly imply that I am also a hypocrite for denouncing the WalMart* corporation, and then posting Friday Hotness photos which some how supports the porn industry which is just as evil.

*scratches head*

You can read the entire exchange on the original post, but it basically ended with this blogger IM Bombing** me with:

10:25 soundwavematthew: You know, Jester, I used to think you were a good guy. Now I see you’re a pompous, self-righteous asshole.
10:25 soundwavematthew disconnected

I really only mention this because another Wal-Mart article came across my feed reader today that gives me a smug sense of satisfaction, even if it is over a relatively small issue: copyright and trademark infringement.

From The Public Citizen(look there! Another link to a source!):

WalOCaust

[Charles] Smith, a Conyers resident, created designs critical of Wal-Mart that merged Wal-Mart’s name with the word “holocaust” and a star, and arranged for CafePress.com, a California company, to put the design on T-shirts, hats, bumper stickers and other items for sale that he sold on the Internet. Smith reserved the domain name and arranged for his items to be sold on CafePress.com.

In December 2005, Wal-Mart sent a letter and e-mail to Smith asserting ownership of trademarks in the name Wal-Mart, the star and the “smiley face” the company uses. The company threatened to sue Smith for infringing and diluting its trademarks and demanded he stop selling his items. Wal-Mart also demanded that Smith stop using the domain name “walocaust.com” and transfer it to Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart made a similar threat to CafePress.com, which immediately stopped making and selling Smith’s items.

From Citizen Vox.Org (Oh lord! Another one!):

[Today] a federal judge told Wal-Mart that nobody in their right mind would buy their trademark infringement claims.

Political and social parody, like the type Charles Smith of Conyers, Ga. uses at his www.walocaust.com and www.walqaeda.com sites, is a cherished tradition that goes back to the founding of this country. If Wal-Mart had won, think of the impact the ruling might have had on blogs, artists, photographers and writers who use parody to criticize companies.

In other words, big corporations do not have the power to suppress the free speech of citizens by attempting to stop the use of their “trademarks” in parody or critical works.

Which means CafePress needs to let me sell my Shitty Coffee tee shirts again.

Life is Too Short To Drink Shitty Coffee

* I realize that I switch between several variations of the name WalMart, some hyphenated, some not, some spaced, some not. That’s so ALL the possible combinations can be found by the Google, not because I’m mental.

** The IM Bomb is the online equivalent of slamming a door, or hanging up the phone before you give the other party the opportunity to respond. It’s high on my list of pet peeves, along with being patronized, having my intelligence questioned, or being called a hypocrite. Radio Matthew was batting 75%.

18 thoughts on “First Amendment 1, Wal-Mart 0

  1. Hey-!!! They’re infringing on my trademark!

    whallocaust!

    Those whall*mart scumbags also took my name!

    (I’m an avid Wal*Mart shopper and happen to think I’d do the same thing to cafepress, and happen to think most federal judges are pompous out-of-touch a$$holes who hand out judgments just to gain favor)

    But I love to laugh.

    whall’s last blog post…LOLa-cola’s

  2. Whall – Sue them. What do these federal judges have to gain? They have already reached the pinnacle of their careers… only a VERY select few will even be considered for appointment to the Supreme Court. They aren’t elected, so their tenure on the bench is secure… Do they spray some chemical in Texas that I should be worried about?

  3. You’re so right – and you made my point much better than I could have.

    The judges atrophy.

    They atrophy while they’re on the bench, because they have nothing to lose, nothing to gain, nothing holding them accountable for their actions. They have nothing taking up their time like working, doing something useful, or contributing to society, so they come up with something to spend their time on.

    It’s like I find the people who do the most complaining in life are the ones who just don’t have enough to do. They don’t work, so they spend their time complaining about those who do, and expect those who do to take care of them.

    When a person’s day is filled with things that matter and contribute to their own lives, like earning a living, raising kids, making dinner, eating together, cleaning the house, washing clothes, playing with friends or family, performing other chores, volunteering, congregating at sporting events, going out on the lake, vacationing, shooting the breeze with a friend at a bar, and in general *living*, they don’t have time to dwell and come up with reasons why OTHER people should or shouldn’t be doing X thing.

    Idle hands truly are the workshop of the devil. And idle judges are the devil’s top minions, for they have no accountability from their actions. Just as members of Congress have life-long taxpayer-paid tax assistance, why would they care what they do to the tax code? It doesn’t affect THEM.

    Man, I feel a blog post coming on 🙂

    whall’s last blog post…LOLa-cola’s

  4. I’m not as wholly opposed to Wal-Mart like Jester is, but I’m definitely not a fan. I think that might be more than I’m a snob than my concern for what they do as a company.

    I’m not sure if I’ve seen the high price documentary, but it sounds familiar.

    What I do know about Walmart is they
    1) offer reasonable shit at a low price
    2) treat their employees VERY badly
    3) put smaller businesses out of business that cannot compete
    4) oh yeah, and they’re fucking everywhere!

    so… I’m going to go ahead and say #1 and #4 are good things.

    #2 and #3 are clearly bad things.

    However… there are a lot of people in the lower socio economic class that NEED a business like walmart and wouldn’t be able to survive without it.

    I’m comparing this situation to child labor in foreign countries. We want to go in and save these poor children from working, but in many cases, these children (and their families) need that money to survive. When we go in and shut down some of these shops, we’re destroying the economy of a whole community and offering absolutely no other option in return.

    No, I’m not defending child labor, but I think sometimes we get so righteous about fixing an problem or injustice, that we don’t realize we’re leaving the situation worse off sometimes.

    If we take away walmart from communities that need it and all they are left with are the ma and pop businesses that clearly need to charge a higher price to survive, we run the risk of condemning both the people and the businesses.

    I admit that from the sound of it, it’s clear that I’m a little bit of a communist and having a controlled economy to keep this kind of stuff in check appeals to me. However, it needs to be prevented from happening in the first place, not cut down haphazardly when it does happen. Fixing a situation is a lot harder and more complex than preventing one from happening.

  5. and now we have another great term I hereby trademark for my own use, and anyone using it needs to pay me royalties.

    Wal*Marxist

    as in

    it takes Wal*Marxist actions to control an economy and capitalism in such a way to prevent free enterprise companies from exceeding the abilities of their competitors, thereby attempting to guarantee equal outcome for all competitors. Usually, these actions are taken against companies who flourish and use smiley faces as logos

    whall’s last blog post…LOLa-cola’s

  6. Whall – What I meant, was that since they aren’t trying to gain anything politically, or move up some non-existent ladder, they aren’t as easily swayed to defend a special interest. This is a good thing… it allows them to focus on matters of law. Members of congress care about the tax code because they are elected officials who answer to the companies who line their pockets at campaign time.

    Crail – Good old-fashioned American Greed.

    othurme – I know you’re old, but really?

    Chris – No shit… It’s good to know that the 1st Amendment is merely seriously wounded and not currently receiving CPR.

    Lee – I go so far to say that the reason there are so many communities out there are in the low socio-economic class is BECAUSE of the Wal-Mart’s presence. Check out the post I wrote some time ago that outlines the reasons I hate Wal-Mart… and follow some of the links that are there (oo!! sources!!).

    Whall – Very nice.

  7. I would actually liken WalMart to cocaine. People are addicted to it. Everyone knows it’s bad for you but people still take it. WalMArt is a peddler of cheap crap that is made anywhere except in the US (Or in Canada in my case) They are not the cheapest but people believe they are. They have some items that are commonly used that are the cheapest but otherwise most people can get a better deal elsewhere.

  8. IP – I consider it a better deal if I’m not contributing to the demise of our economy. Even if I pay more than $2.74 for a microwave.

    Danny – You can buy deodorant almost ANYWHERE. Target, Longs, Walgreens, 7-11. There’s no reason to go to WM for that.

    hello – Nice.

  9. Wal-Mart fird me after over a year of good service to both them and their customers. As a result of my hard efforts and those same efforts of several others on our team, we are UP 34.9% in sales over last year at the same time. Do you want to know WHY they fired me (emphasis added)? About 3 months ago I ALMOST (emphasis added) went out the wrong door, which, I found out afterwords, that, in addition to myself, several other associates were, and had been doing the same thing that I was doing. For whatever reason(s) they were not disiplined. They (Wal-Mart management) wrote me up for that, and I was required to write a “D-Day” letter (whatever that is). Recently, while on my 15 minute break, I bought several large bottles of juices. I then took them back to my dept. to be rung up by my manager, and ultimately by my friend Shane, Support Mgr. in the store warehouse. He purportedly never got into any trouble or difficulties over his involement in this “sinister” and “terroristic” act. To make a long story short, I shall endeavor to cut to the chase, so to speak. Ultimately, I was suspended (jusy like before, for ALMOST (emphasis added) going out, what was now, the wrong door. Recently, just a day or so before I got fired, Store Mgr. Bonnie had sent to my VM box on my cellphone what I would, especially after I had listened to it a couple of days after I got fired, I would now term it as a “bogus” “conniving” “sham” and “RUSE!” VM to my cellphone before I was fired. This VM which I never had received for a couple of days (I don’t know why)had Store. Mgr. Bonnie calling me,asking me to “come in soon” so that she “could/would get me back to work!” and other words and phrases to the same effect, quite feeblely attempting to disguise the REAL reason(s) for her telephone call and subsequnt VM message that she had left for me, and “dupe” me and, furthermore, her transparent efforts in falsely and fruadulently attempting to, facetiously putting a “positive spin” on things.
    I was then fired for NOT BRINGING (emphasis added) my payed for and receipted 4-5 bottles of juices back to the courtesy desk FAST ENOUGH (emphasis added)! The asst. store mgr (he’s only been working at Wal-Mart for about a year) then he lied to me, as he had done several times in the past, as well as his “buddy” swearing to whatever lies that the he, the ass’t store mgr. had made or was making. His “buddy”, the ICS support mgr.echoing and affirming his undaunted support (read: lying to cover up the other guy’s lies) for what (lies) had already been said, a support mgr. in ICS (warehouse) and the ass’t store mgr., again lying to me and wrongfully claiming that he had, during our first (1st) conversation re: The Juice Story, that this “SUPPOSED RULE” that I supposedly was violative of (but, again, I was NEVER informed of such a “Supposed RULE,” that he had indicated to me (another lie!) that he had attached a high degree of urgency to these errent Wal-Mart bottles of Juices, and I, according to him, particularly after having spoken to him the first (1st) time, that he allegedly stated that (big LIE!) I knew or should have known and, thus, had a clear sense of urgency and that I should have emergently been of dispatch then, if not sooner, to virtually “sprint” (run) down to and “sprint” (run) back from the automotive dept. with, arguably, the most EXPENSIVE bottles of juices (V8, grape juice X2, etc.) known to mankind. How’s that as an adder to your BLOG(S).
    I do anticipate suing them in U.S. District Court all the way up here in New Haven, CT. “Just one good turn deserving an other.”

    B.P.

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