Does a cease and desist letter fit the olympic notion? For the DOSB, it does.

The german company Walther produces juice beverages and publishes Walthers Saftblog (“Walther’s Juice Blog”), one of the most successful business blogs in Germany. Well, it seems more appropriate to say “published”, since they decided today to shut their blog down after receiving a c&d letter from the German Olympic Sports Union (“Deutscher Olympischer Sportbund”, DOSB).
In the 17-pages document, Walther is accused of, among others, exploitation of reputation, copyright infringement, deception and trademark infringement for publishing two harmless blog entries about the Olympic Games (entry 1&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1 explaining the difference between the Olympiad and the Olympic Games, entry 2&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1 about Germany’s olympic successes).

German attorney and law blogger Udo Vetter can’t find any offences, though. (At the most a small one, namely using the olympic rings logo without attribution.)

Of course, the german blogosphere reacts in the same way it did for example in the Heidi Klum incident it turns up the heat.

  • Basic Thinking: A-hole alert
  • Indiskretion Ehrensache: Meta Tag Olympia (“Outside of your corruption-infested umbrella organization, there’s a social order named democracy”)
  • Law blog: Olympic cease and desist (“This is so weird, there could be doping in the game”)

Once again, the blogosphere deals out wrath to one side and love to the other: For the DOSB, this could become a PR nightmare, with many bloggers writing articles on their websites as well as emails and letters to the DOSB. The Marketing Blog even plans a survey among the organization’s sponsors.

On the other hand, company director Kirstin Walther expressed her amazement of all that support by strangers in an addendum to her blog entry&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1#more592 where she announced the shutdown of their blog. Let’s hope they give that step a second thought. We all want justice to win, not the lawyers.