What’s Post Cereal’s Issue Trying to “Bully” the Indie Band OK Go?
Branding is one of the most important elements of a new product rollout. Companies need to create an image that’s appealing and a name that’s unique. Post Cereal has cast aside this common wisdom, though, as is evidenced by the conglomerate’s recent lawsuit against an indie band. Music fans are puzzling over the cereal company’s weird campaign, and many are worrying about its implications for trademarks and intellectual property. Read on to learn why some commentators have branded Post a bully in the wake of their litigation against OK Go.
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Why OK Go Sent a Cease-and-Desist Letter
Before Post filed suit against OK Go, the company introduced a new novelty breakfast product that promised a fresh cup of milk and cereal with only the addition of water. This announcement was met with confusion, though, as readers noticed that the name of the product — Ok Go! — was already in use. Furthermore, the band has previously worked on a promotional video for Post, making the announcement even more upsetting. The band sent a cease-and-desist letter to Post Cereal that unfortunately went ignored.
Post Cereal’s Decision To Sue the Indie Band
After disregarding the requests in the cease-and-desist letter, Post Cereal chose to escalate the dispute by filing a lawsuit against the indie band. The suit contends that the name of the cereal is different than the name of the band because the former features an exclamation point at the end of the phrase. Furthermore, the suit says that consumers couldn’t possibly confuse the band with the cereal because they offer different kinds of products. Interestingly, though, some search queries produce results that relate to both the band and the cereal.
The Implications of Snoop Dogg vs. Kellogg’s
Online denizens have noted that the case bears several parallels to another case involving music, cereal, and copyright infringement. Snoop Dogg was the subject of a campaign led by Kellogg’s after the rapper introduced a cereal called Snoop Loopz. Kellogg’s objected to Snoop Dogg’s use of this branding and made moves to block its production. This conflict ultimately prompted a partnership with Post Cereal, though, wherein Post stood up for Snoop Dogg and offered a promising distribution deal — a decidedly different stance than Post’s position toward OK Go.
Post cereal denying the world the greatest music videos ever that @okgo could have made to promote this dumb cereal. https://t.co/369nAjjNSW
— Robert Kirkman (@RobertKirkman) February 2, 2023
OK Go Fans Hope the Band Can Keep Its Name
Post has insisted that OK Go will not lose the right to use their own name, but if the cereal continues to infringe on the band’s branding, the indie musicians may lose opportunities for promotional opportunities in the future and also confuse fans into thinking they are part of the cereal branding. This is a worst-case scenario for a band that’s been using the same name for over 20 years. As the dispute continues to unravel, though, there are many possible outcomes to consider. Some have suggested that it would be interesting, for example, if Kellogg’s stepped in to help OK Go as Post did for Snoop Dogg.
In the meantime, it seems OK Go remains committed to making great music and connecting with their supporters. Here’s hoping that Post can ditch the bullying and honor the band’s intellectual property.