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  1. #1
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    Specialized Owns Roubaix?

    Okay, when did Specialized bicycles become so wealthy they could buy up all of Roubaix from the. French? For a land dal of this magnitude you would expect to have seen a little bit of media attention.

    War vet forced to change bike shop’s name after threat from Specialized | Calgary Herald

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    Hey what's new... they sue everyone. Shame on them for picking on the little guys. Make sure to check out the comments after that article.
    ...Be careful what you're looking at because it might be looking back...

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    I've seen people post in the past that they would never buy a Specialized product. This makes me feel the same way.
    Copyright protection laws aside, there are always several ways to deal with a situation.

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    Unfortunately the timing of this happening sucks. I say that as in less then a week 4 Canadian soldiers with PTSD have commited suicide.

  5. #5
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    I have reached out to Roubaix Cycles and offered my legal services pro bono. I hate bullies.
    Strava made me do it....

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    Of special note is that it is called Cafe Roubaix Bicycles, I wonder how many hotels, restaurants and plumbing services that Specialized has sued in Roubaix?

    And then Fuji just goes ahead and straight out names their bikes Roubaix.

    Fuji Bikes | ROAD | COMPETITION SERIES | ROUBAIX 1.5
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unglued View Post
    I have reached out to Roubaix Cycles and offered my legal services pro bono. I hate bullies.
    If this is true, you're my man crush for 2014. Oggie is so 2013.
    "I love being on a bike. It helps me feel free. I get it from my dad", by Guillaume Blanchet

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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unglued View Post
    I have reached out to Roubaix Cycles and offered my legal services pro bono. I hate bullies.
    Specialized has shown a pattern over the years.... Epic Designs now Revelate as well comes to mind.

    Like anything people will tolerate behavior like this to a certain point. And Specialized based on previous public response was definitely not expecting this level of hostile response. In this case their target being a veteran was enough.

    The Café Roubaix is now getting orders from as far away as New Zealand.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biggie View Post
    If this is true, you're my man crush for 2014. Oggie is so 2013.
    Er thanks I think?
    Strava made me do it....

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    Not to mention the earlier Mountain Cycle/Specialized Stumptown saga. They're prepared to defend words that aren't even the ones they use.

    Specialized, Mountain Cycle disagree on "Stumptown" | BikePortland.org

    Jude Kirstein should have relabeled her wheels Epique or Epik,



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  12. #12
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    Yep, fawk the big S. I've been boycotting them for years now. Time to throw the few Specialized odds and ends laying the bottom of the spare parts bucket into the trash.

    I also went ahead and ordered a Cafe Roubaix tee shirt.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikin' Bric View Post
    Yep, fawk the big S. I've been boycotting them for years now. Time to throw the few Specialized odds and ends laying the bottom of the spare parts bucket into the trash.

    I also went ahead and ordered a Cafe Roubaix tee shirt.
    Who will be Lap Dogs water bottle sponsor for 2014 now?

    Quote Originally Posted by Unglued View Post
    Er thanks I think?
    Won't 14 Stone be jealous?

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    Interesting that the Roubaix trademark registration in Canada is for the singular use of that word and only for bike equipment such as frames and components, handlebars, front fork and bicycle tires.

    Doesn't mention modifiers like Cafe or bicycle shops.

    And it's unlikely that people would confuse the two, as one is a small bicycle shop in a small town west of Calgary, well off the Trans Canada Highway and another is a giant litigation-happy corporation full of lawyers with nothing better to do that file nuisance law suits against people who actually made an effort to avoid trademark infringement issues when they registered the name by adding Cafe to it.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biggie View Post
    If this is true, you're my man crush for 2014. Oggie is so 2013.
    awww... but in this case - i am not hurt... unglued is da man.

    specialized should not do this.
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unglued View Post
    I have reached out to Roubaix Cycles and offered my legal services pro bono. I hate bullies.
    Nice - thanks U-G'd. This could get interesting if a few more like-minded lawyers in addition to yourself get the same hankering to help. It would be very cool if Specialized had to back off because the tables got turned and they couldn't afford to fight against a community-based legal effort.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockyuphill View Post
    Interesting that the Roubaix trademark registration in Canada is for the singular use of that word and only for bike equipment such as frames and components, handlebars, front fork and bicycle tires.

    Doesn't mention modifiers like Cafe or bicycle shops.

    And it's unlikely that people would confuse the two, as one is a small bicycle shop in a small town west of Calgary, well off the Trans Canada Highway and another is a giant litigation-happy corporation full of lawyers with nothing better to do that file nuisance law suits against people who actually made an effort to avoid trademark infringement issues when they registered the name by adding Cafe to it.
    wow... Specialized has already lost the lawsuit in the court of public opinion. Their Facebook page is getting hammered.

    They can still do the right thing and drop the lawsuit. I hope they do.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by osokolo View Post
    wow... Specialized has already lost the lawsuit in the court of public opinion. Their Facebook page is getting hammered.

    They can still do the right thing and drop the lawsuit. I hope they do.
    Hopefully so but it looks like alot of damage has already been done to their reputation.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by osokolo View Post
    wow... Specialized has already lost the lawsuit in the court of public opinion. Their Facebook page is getting hammered.

    They can still do the right thing and drop the lawsuit. I hope they do.
    From the veteran angle....well, sure isn't looking good for Specialized. So while Specialized goes after a veteran. Trek Bicycles has been taking a different path...

    Pedal Dancer®: Wounded Warrior Project

    Trek for 7 years has been supporting the Wounded Warrior Project. Sponsors veterans who race. And if I recall correctly the veteran who completed the Leadville 100 who lost his arms, Trek helped him out with the bike if I recall correctly.

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  22. #22
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  23. #23
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    It appears that Dan Richter could win a lawsuit. Unfortunately being as small as he is & having other things to worry about is why he's not fighting it. Also unfortunately Specialized's lawyers have nothing better to do than track down and harass anyone they find who might be infringing on their trademarks. Lots of big corporations do this. They win some and lose some. The lawyers? They always win no matter what the outcome.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja's Son
    You may be happy to hear that my dad has kicked cancer's ass. Now he's looking for whoever sent it.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja View Post
    It appears that Dan Richter could win a lawsuit. Unfortunately being as small as he is & having other things to worry about is why he's not fighting it. Also unfortunately Specialized's lawyers have nothing better to do than track down and harass anyone they find who might be infringing on their trademarks. Lots of big corporations do this. They win some and lose some. The lawyers? They always win no matter what the outcome.
    by now Dan must have realized that if he chooses to fight - he could EASILY collect required defense funds by starting an internet campaign. I also hope that Specialized would realize that this fight ain't worth fighting and find a way to amicably resolve the issue (preferred way).

    the power of pissed people should not be underestimated...
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  25. #25
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    The lack of any response so far by Specialized is curious. Is everyone off for the weekend?

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    Quote Originally Posted by osokolo View Post
    by now Dan must have realized that if he chooses to fight - he could EASILY collect required defense funds by starting an internet campaign. I also hope that Specialized would realize that this fight ain't worth fighting and find a way to amicably resolve the issue (preferred way).

    the power of pissed people should not be underestimated...
    I just working with a poor old farmer in Eastern Ontario who has been fighting government expropriation for 7 years. He has a crapload of support but after 7 years he's just given up. It's made him sick and has put his wife in the hospital. I don't blame anybody for not fighting the big guy. Yes, you might win. But really, who wants that crap running their lives?

    I'd fight but I've got all kinds of time and I'm a **** disturber. Not everyone is like that.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja's Son
    You may be happy to hear that my dad has kicked cancer's ass. Now he's looking for whoever sent it.

  27. #27
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    This same thread is happening in the General Discussion forum as well. The Big "S" must stand for screwing soldiers? Wow, who made the decision to bully a small bicycle café?
    "I love being on a bike. It helps me feel free. I get it from my dad", by Guillaume Blanchet

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockyuphill View Post
    bike equipment such as frames and components, handlebars, front fork and bicycle tires.

    Doesn't mention modifiers like Cafe or bicycle shops.
    You're right, but the trouble is Mr. Richter IS selling his own brand of wheels labelled with Roubaix.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Ninja View Post
    I just working with a poor old farmer in Eastern Ontario who has been fighting government expropriation for 7 years. He has a crapload of support but after 7 years he's just given up. It's made him sick and has put his wife in the hospital. I don't blame anybody for not fighting the big guy. Yes, you might win. But really, who wants that crap running their lives?

    I'd fight but I've got all kinds of time and I'm a **** disturber. Not everyone is like that.
    He's already started to fight. He contacted a newspaper who broke the story and the internet did the rest. And good for him. He's winning in the court of public opinion without spending a dime on legal fees.

    But it's not as fun as looking at cats and arguing with strangers. (Love the signature trail ninja...I assume you changed it because you exacted a terrible revenge on the guy who sent the cancer ...)
    Strava made me do it....

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by tommy View Post
    The lack of any response so far by Specialized is curious. Is everyone off for the weekend?
    No, but I bet their PR company takes the weekend off...
    Strava made me do it....

  31. #31
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    His wheels are branded Cafe Roubaix, not Roubaix.

    This would be like Starbucks trademarking the word Coffee because they use it in their name and suing every coffee shop for market confusion caused by trademark infringement. Or suing Battlestar Galactica for having a Starbuck character. Or a pizza place trademarking Chicago style pizza and then suing anyone that used Chicago in their company name.

    Quote Originally Posted by afalts View Post
    You're right, but the trouble is Mr. Richter IS selling his own brand of wheels labelled with Roubaix.
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  32. #32
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    It's about time trademark offices stopped giving em out so easily. Same for patents.

    The sheer arrogance of specialized though is astounding. Their spelling of specialised and stumpjumper fair enough, their S, no problems, but this??? Pfft - ********s!

    What's the record for number of threads about the same subject at the same time - specialized has become famous....

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    Re: Specialized Owns Roubaix?

    Quote Originally Posted by osokolo View Post
    the power of pissed people should not be underestimated...
    ^ this is the ticket right here.

    I think we've all heard a little here and there about Spesh being sue-crazy... but those were JUST business owners at that time. With this newest guy being sued, you are talking multiple angles of pissed of people...

    - those already angry with spesh from previous legal BS
    - veterans
    - "patriots" who see a service man being picked on
    - the entire bicycle community finding out
    - people who don't trust big businesses and supporters of small business... the "anti-corporation" movement going on.

    I don't see this ending well for the S mammoth at all.
    ...Be careful what you're looking at because it might be looking back...

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    ...Be careful what you're looking at because it might be looking back...

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  36. #36
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    LOL. There is always a bigger dog out there. Well done ASI.
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  37. #37
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    Holy cow. What a whirlwind soap opera condensed entirely into a 48 hour timespan.

    Quote Originally Posted by osokolo View Post
    LOL. There is always a bigger dog out there. Well done ASI.
    Maybe not bigger, but ASI is holding the high hand it seems. Nice of the to come out of the gate so quickly to cut through the red tape and provide a resolution instead of retreating to back room dealings with Specialized. Anyone want to guess whose market share and brand value is going up, and whose is going down out of all this?

  38. #38
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    Lol - this is why PR firms value a quick reaction - specialized is only going to look bad now. Even if they were going to be nice, it's too late - you've been beaten to the punch!

    An Epic PR disaster!

  39. #39
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    Yay, the bouncing ball of justice!
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  40. #40
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    Or the rapidly rotating wheel of Karma. :-D
    Quote Originally Posted by garage monster View Post
    Yay, the bouncing ball of justice!
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  41. #41
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    Somebody in Specialized's legal department failed to ensure they had all their info before beginning this.

  42. #42
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    The trademark equivalent of ambulance chasers. Everyonce in a while the over eager types rear end an ambulance or two.

    Quote Originally Posted by Enduramil View Post
    Somebody in Specialized's legal department failed to ensure they had all their info before beginning this.
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  43. #43
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    Obviously, the big S got wind that I had offered my services to Roubaix and realized they should stay in the shallow end :-)
    Strava made me do it....

  44. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unglued View Post
    Obviously, the big S got wind that I had offered my services to Roubaix and realized they should stay in the shallow end :-)
    Of course, but they didn't want to admit it so they went to their trademark licensing partner ASI and jointly concocted this cover story as a more graceful exit from the fray rather than admitting their reluctance to finding you on the other side of the negotiating table.

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockyuphill View Post
    Or the rapidly rotating wheel of Karma. :-D
    That moment...... when you walk awkwardly into your bosses office on Monday morning. Your boss who is beyond pissed because of the giant manure pile that has appeared on his desk and has given him a Exedrine Number 3 headache.

  46. #46
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    From earlier this afternoon on the Cafe Roubaix Facebook.


  47. #47
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    On the plus side, I'm looking forward to getting the Cafe Roubaix T-shirt, along with the "I climb well for someone of my weight" T-shirt. Souvenirs of the social media battle.
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    I wonder if this started of as a "make work project" for the lawfirm or in house lawyers. what a better way to say "hey we are looking out for you" then to start up random crap.

    This one backfired pretty bad.

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by pharmaboy View Post
    Lol - this is why PR firms value a quick reaction - specialized is only going to look bad now. Even if they were going to be nice, it's too late - you've been beaten to the punch!

    An Epic PR disaster!
    It's going to look bad now?
    As if it didn't look horrendous and soulless already.
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  50. #50
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    Singletrack Magazine | Battle of Roubaix treaty announced

    Hmm.....it would appear that Specialized Canada's lawyer does seem to be up to speed on their trademark laws..... maybe Unglued could help them with that.



    As some had pointed out, bicycle brand Fuji’s use of the Roubaix name predated Specialized’s and it was in fact Fuji’s parent company Action Sports International that held the initial Roubaix trademark as it applied to bicycles. Under the North American Free Trade Agreement, trademark protection granted in the United States is applicable in Canada – and vise-versa – giving ASI first-use trademark rights. While it may not have been well known in the Canadian office at the time that the Canadian trademark was applied for, Specialized licenses the Roubaix name from ASI. And, as explained to US trade magazine Bicycle Retailer and Industry News, it was Specialized’s move to protect the Canadian trademark that brought the issue to ASI’s attention:

    “ASI only recently learned of Specialized’s registration of the Roubaix trademark in Canada and ASI’s position is that Specialized’s registration of the mark in Canada was inappropriate under the terms of their license agreement. ASI has used the mark in Canada for well over 10 years, giving it first-use trademark rights in Canada.”

    In short, the Roubaix name was not Specialized’s to trademark – in Canada or elsewhere – or theirs to defend. The Bicycle Retailer article goes on to suggest that ASI did not foresee any harm coming from stemming from confusion between a model of road bike, the small bike shop, and the shop’s in-house wheel line:






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