9000maps Lawsuit Threat - EtQ - They ask for a favour and they complain 9 years later

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Marc

Fully vaccinated are you?
Leader
I received this on Thursday. It's another frivilous lawsuit threat. For your amusement, see attachment.

Here is the letter in text:
LAw OFFICES OF ERIC S. FREIBRUN, LTD. Attorney at Law
EDENS CORPORATE CENTER 630 DUNDEE ROAD SUITE 120 NORTHBROOK, IL 60062-2749
ERIC S. FREIBRUN
TELEPHONE: 847-562-0099 FACSIMILE: 847-562-0033 E-MAIL: [email protected]

March 21, 2006
Via UPS

Mr. Marc Smith 8466 LaSourdsville - West Chester Road West Chester, OH 45069-1929

Re: Copyright Infringement and Trademark Infringement of EtQ 9000 Maps - TM

Dear Mr. Smith:

This law firm represents EtQ Management Consultants, Inc. of Farmingdale, New York ("EtQ").

It has recently come to EtQ's attention that you have posted on your web site at (broken link removed). without EtQ's authorization or permission - nor any attribution to EtQ
They are on the pages they sent me, but not all. Since that's what they sent me I had little control on where they placed their 'citation'...

EtQ's proprietary and copyrighted materials consisting of various quality control flowcharts marketed by EtQ under the trademark 9000 MapsTM. Please see the attached Certificate of Registration in the U.S. Copyright Office issued to EtQ in July, 1996, for the 9000 Maps materials.

You are hereby advised that your copying EtQ's 9000 Maps materials and posting them on your web site constitute a willful and intentional infringement of EtQ's copyrights under U.S. Copyright Law. We note that you claim on your web site that your activities fall within the fair use exceptions to the Copyright Law. We strongly disagree.
Since they sent the html files to me, this is simply silly... Not to mention these are 9 years old...

You cannot credibly argue that your use of these materials is for "nonprofit educational purposes" as required under 17 U.S.C. Sec. 107 when you have a prominent link to the services you offer on each page on your site on which the 9000 Maps materials appear.

This is totally false. Can you read? There are (were) no links what so ever to my web site or services, on ANY of the html files. A 'prominent' link? Not by a long shot.

Even if those links did not appear...

Either they did or didn't. You can't have it both ways. You can't accuse me of something and then say "Ummm, well, even if what I accuse you of isn't true..." That's lawyer talk? How old are you?

...your site is unarguably commercial in that it promotes your services. The posting of EtQ' s copyrighted materials appears to be for the purpose of burnishing your professional credentials and increasing the value of your site to your actual or prospective customers.

They ask a favour and 9 years later they complain...

Additional factors under the fair use exception to the Copyright Law are the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole, and the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work. In this situation, you have copied the entirety of EtQ's 9000 Maps materials. Certainly, the availability of these materials at no charge from your site diminishes EtQ's ability - and right - to derive commercial benefit from its copyrighted property.

In addition to the foregoing, you have used EtQ's trademark, "9000 Maps," without permission or license, and without any indication that the source of such materials is EtQ, thus contributing to the dilution of EtQ's trademark rights under applicable trademark and unfair trade practices law.

Be advised that your willful and intentional infringement of EtQ's copyrights entitles EtQ to injunctive relief, in addition to statutory damages of up to $150,000.00, plus recovery of EtQ's courts costs and attorney fees (17 U.S.C. Sec. 504, 505). Your misuse of EtQ's 9000 Maps trademark also entitles EtQ to seek injunctive relief and monetary damages.

Accordingly, EtQ demands that you immediately remove all materials comprising EtQ's 9000 Maps product from your site, including all references to 9000 Maps and uses of the 9000 Maps trademark. As a courtesy, EtQ will afford you ten (10) days...
Did that within 15 minutes of receipt of your threat... I definitely don't want to provide EtQ with any further free advertising...

...from the date of this letter to comply. If your cooperation is not forthcoming, EtQ will have no choice but to consider commencing legal action against you without further notice.

Sincerely,

LA W OFFICES OF ERIC S. FREIBRUN, LTD. Eric S. Freibrun
ESF:fs Attachment
Copy to: Glenn McCarty, EtQ Management Consultants, Inc.

Hello, Eric! The company you represent should do its homework. And so should you... Back in 1997 I was contacted by someone who claimed to be from EtQ asking about advertising. I did not accept advertising until 22 December 2003. At the time I did not agree to any advertising, but the model was interesting and I agreed to post an html version I was sent by someone at EtQ as an illustration of online integrated flow charts.

I did not credit EtQ because, as I explained, I did not accept advertising at that time - I did it as a courtesy. They were (9 years ago) a good example of a linked flow chart example. Of course 9 years later, this is all 'old stuff'.

You make silly statements such as:
You cannot credibly argue that your use of these materials is for "nonprofit educational purposes" as required under 17 U.S.C. Sec. 107 when you have a prominent link to the services you offer on each page on your site on which the 9000 Maps materials appear.

I beg to differ. Your eye sight must be failing. There is NO link to my site or advertisement or other link, other than the inter-maps links, on any page that I posted as a favour to THE ETQ PEOPLE AT THAT TIME (1997). I assume you need glasses (to be nice). I definitely wouldn't want you as a lawyer considering your misrepresentation of the facts (which can be reviewed at the Internet Archive {aka the Wayback Machine} site going back to 1996). EtQ is cited on many pages. Not once do (now DID) I link to, or cite, my web site or my services. Nor do (NOW did) I in any way associate myself or my web site with the maps or EtQ. There is not (now WAS) any type of advertising, or other links including to my site, on those pages other than what were in the files sent to me. All the links were internal.

Because the maps were initially posted as a request, and are from 1997, about 9 years ago, within 15 minutes of receipt of your UPS SuperSaver letter (lawsuit threat) I removed all references to 9000maps on my web site. Try to do a company a favour and they come back and bite you... EtQ is cited on many of those pages. Not once do I link to or cite my web site or in any way take credit for the maps.

I wish you and the EtQ people exactly what greedy people deserve - nada. Nine years after asking me for a favour they decide to threaten me... Cute...

PS: I'm at LeSourdsville - West Chester Road, NOT LaSourdsville - West Chester Road. Obviously you don't pay attention to detail... Not what I would expect in a respectable lawyer.

And BTW, the copyright appears to be for 9000 maps (with a space), not 9000maps.

Considering this, it is my recommendation that folks avoid EtQ and their 'products'.
 

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  • EtQ_9000maps_lawsuit_threat.pdf
    1.5 MB · Views: 309
J

JRKH

Rediculus

I am beginning to wonder if their is a move afoot to have computers search the web for various possible lawsuit potentials and then automatically generate these threatening letters. Not unlike all the credit card offers and other pieces of junk that arrive daily.
As you note Marc there are a number of points they obviously did not investigate. They just fired off an ill advised threat. Personnaly I would expect that someone from the company could have e-mailed you and asked about it before all of this horsepucky.

I can just see some law firm generating this garbage and also sending the company a letter saying, "We found this web site using your stuff (maybe) and thought you should know. And Oh by the way, we sent them a threatening letter. If you want to send us a check we would be happy to litigate this for you".

May they all rot

James
 
D

D.Scott

Claes Gefvenberg said:
This is of course quite ridiculous, and backfires badly: Talk about poor PR... I don't suppose it will increase their business? :rolleyes:

/Claes

It sure won't with me or any of the companies I am associated with.

Dave
 

Wes Bucey

Prophet of Profit
In the past, I have written about the concept of "barratry" wherein someone institutes legal proceedings as a way to punish the entity being sued. The point being the entity committing barratry can create an expense for the other party while keeping its own expenses low. Many of the complaints against personal injury lawsuits are really against barratry by attorneys seeking to get fees from settling "nuisance" suits - fees which far outweigh the costs involved in instituting the suit.

A letter of this type is a prelude to barratry, hoping to find some "sucker" willing to say "No!" and then slapping him with a lawsuit he soon finds is more expensive to defend than to settle.

Whether or not the attorney is fee paid (in which case, he is hustling his client) or works on a contingency percentage of what he gains in suits and settlements, the net result is the same for the victim:
"It is usually less costly to cave in to the initial demand than to fight for a principle."

In point of fact, an ethical attorney would have had the client write a letter on the client's letterhead, asking politely that the material be removed from the website. The matter would most likely be settled amicably and all would be friends.

However, by using this tactic, the attorney has earned a severe dose of
enmity
for the client which far outweighs the value of the material if it had been left untouched on the Cove.
 
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R

ralphsulser

Wes Bucey said:
However, by using this tactic, the attorney has earned a severe dose of
enmity
for the client which far outweighs the value of the material if it had been left untouched on the Cove.
Yes, IF the attorney actually exists, may be just smoke and mirrors by the subject company. My cousin is an attorney, and I have cc'd his office as a ploy just to get some ones attention to do things properly.;)
 
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Wes Bucey

Prophet of Profit
ralphsulser said:
Yes, IF the attorney actually exists, may be just smoke and mirrors by the subject company. My cousin is an attorney, and I have cc'd his office as a ploy just to get some ones attention to do things properly.;)
Attorney is real enough and specializes in intellectual property on the web. (Google his name)
letter to Marc is on Freibrun's letterhead.

Interestingly, his website is very "blah" for a guy who has so many webheads as clients - you'd think he'd barter for a good layout!

Certainly a different approach to law than most firms I'm familiar with.

It puts me in mind of a guy who walks up to you, punches you square in the nose and then says, "Let's negotiate!"
 
J

JWenmeekers

It has recently come to EtQ's attention .....

How ?¿

When you look at his background, you know his objective.

It's clear to me, he's not a lawyer he's a liar.

Woops, again a reason for an unethical attorney to file a lawsuit....

I shamelessly copied the underlined words from Wes Bucey's post.

Give me a break, he 'provide the highest quality services'.....
That's deliberately omit important information.
Somebody wants to audit that firm ?

Let's go back to our daily quality business and consider this a reverse practical joke.
Or are those 'copyright' jokes a monthly issue....¿¿
 
L

little__cee

PayPal

Wes Bucey said:
Interestingly, his website is very "blah" for a guy who has so many webheads as clients - you'd think he'd barter for a good layout!

"

But it does offer clients the opportunity to click the PayPal icon to pay!!! I thought that was only for Ebay!:biglaugh:
 
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