Artist Fights Chick-fil-A to Use Phrase 'Eat More Kale'

November 28, 2011

Vermont artist Bo Muller-Moore is being sued by fast food giant, Chick-fil-A, for the use of his phrase "eat more kale."   Chick-fil-A holds the trademark to the phrase "eat mor chikin" and the company's lawyers wrote in a letter that it "is likely to cause confusion of the public and dilutes the distinctiveness of Chick-fil-A's intellectual property and diminishes its value."

The fast food chain has a history of protecting its trademark with over 30 former cases of others attempting to use "eat more" phrase.

Muller-Moore first received notice from Chick-fil-A on Oct. 4 in a letter ordering him to stop using the phrase and turn over his website, eatmorekale.com, to Chick-fil-A.  He says "Our plan is to not back down. This feels like David versus Goliath. I know what it's like to protect what's yours in business."

Muller-Moore's lawyer Daniel Richardson says "Bo's is a very different statement. It's more of a philosophical statement about local agriculture and community-supported farmers markets," further commenting that "at the end of the day, I don't think anyone will step forward and say they bought an 'eat more kale' shirt thinking it was a Chick-fil-A product."

Oliver Goodenough, a Vermont Law School professor and specialist in intellectual and property law, says "This looks a bit like an example of over-enthusiasm for brand protection."  Additionally,  "There are (law) firms in the United States that take this over-enthusiasm for brand protection seriously and believe the more they can scare away the better. If folks aren't deeply committed to this and it's a funny byproduct, maybe they won't fight it."

What do you think about this case? Should Muller-Moore hand over his name or keep fighting?

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