Recently, I got an unpleasant surprise in the mail. It was a communication from an attorney’s office regarding a fellow speaker’s trademark phrase. I did not use the same phrase in fact but they considered that what I was using was an infringement. I had also taken pains to trademark my phrase.
Now, this isn’t about copyrighting and trade marking, but instead about communication. The fellow speaker is someone I had met and actually had dinner with in a group in the last year. Her specialty is corporate communication skills. I found this somewhat (if not deeply) ironic.
Had she been truly versed in communication, it would have taken only a simple phone call and a polite discussion to determine if there is truly a problem and the best resolution.
Instead she has created a great deal of ill will and anxiety involving expensive attorneys who will, no doubt, be the only beneficiaries in this transaction. It frustrates and disappoints me to consider that in this day and age of virtuality and cyberspace, a real live voice to voice communication is so rare and yet so needed.
Before you go off the deep end, hiring litigious experts in your business or personal life, consider if there is another option. Perhaps an open discussion, polite and professional will be just as effective and far less costly both in dollars and in sense.
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