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Girl Scouts Suing the Boy Scouts

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1 hour ago, Hawkwin said:

 

So when talking to a group of boy scouts, your going to say, "hey BSA for boys, let's gather 'round to..."?

or call the by their individual, patrol or troop name.

Hey troop 123,

Hey Coyote Patrol,

Hey johhny and phil,

Hey jane and margaret.

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3 hours ago, Hawkwin said:

 

18 hours ago, cocomax said:

I will be using these terms and completely avoid trouble:

BSA

BSA for Boys

BSA for Girls

Cubs

Cubs for Boys

Cubs for Girls

Venturing

So when talking to a group of boy scouts, your going to say, "hey BSA for boys, let's gather 'round to..."?

No, the above terms are for interfacing with the public on fliers, news stories and recruiting. I will use it for anything the GSUSA might see or hear about.

The way I speak to our troop has not changed at all.

I speak to the boys by their names or position in troop.  If I need to refer to everyone I say  "everyone" or "we".

"SPL,  what does everyone need to be doing right now?"

"SPL,  when do we need to leave?"

  

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1 hour ago, Eagle1993 said:

Interesting NY Times article regarding the lawsuit.  What I find interesting is that some GSUSA leaders are expressing frustration with their leadership not listening to the girls with GSUSA.  

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/09/us/girl-scouts-sue-boy-scouts.html

Interesting read

http://mchattielaw.com/2018/11/09/scouts-trademark-infringement/

 

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1 hour ago, fred johnson said:

The issue is less about the trademark and more about marketing to both genders.  

Sorta.  I see the GSUSA point.  They have been recognized as the Scouting organization that provides services to girls for 100 years and are claiming that they are the only organization allowed to use the term "Scouts" in association with programs for girls.  I am nor versed in the legal rules here, but it seems clear to me that they own the term "Girl Scouts" (upper case).  It's not clear to me that they own the term "scouts" or "girl scouts" (lower case).  So, in the context of programs for boys, it's fine for the BSA to say "Scouts".  In the context of programs for girls, their claim is that it is not OK.

Again, I don't hear the argue that the BSA cannot provide these programs - just that they cannot provide the programs for girls and then call them Scouts, scouts, or girl scouts.

I'm trying to think of a similar analogy

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22 minutes ago, ParkMan said:

I'm trying to think of a similar analogy

Perhaps Cola.

"Coca Cola" started it all but it wasn't long before there were other "Colas" like Pepsi, RC, and others throughout the world. While Coke can claim ownership of Coca Cola and Pepsi can claim ownership of Pepsi Cola, I doubt anyone would face serious legal challenges to simply offering a generic "Cola" or perhaps a more accurate of a comparison, "Cola BSA."

 

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23 minutes ago, ParkMan said:

I'm trying to think of a similar analogy

Possibly Bourbon may be a good example

If it is produced in the USA, made from a grain mixture that is at least 51% corn, aged in new, charred oak containers, distilled to no more than 160 (U.S.) proof (80% alcohol by volume),  entered into the barrel for aging at no more than 125 proof (62.5% alcohol by volume), bottled (like other whiskeys) at 80 proof or more (40% alcohol by volume) it can be called Bourbon.

Do the same thing in Canada, guess it is called whiskey.  It's all in the name though the product is or could be identical

Also as this suit may drag on, the use of bourbon (or whiskey) may help many of us endure.  

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2 minutes ago, Jameson76 said:

 

Also as this suit may drag on, the use of bourbon (or whiskey) may help many of us endure.   

Take a little of my cola and a little of your whiskey...

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3 minutes ago, Jameson76 said:

Possibly Bourbon may be a good example

If it is produced in the USA, made from a grain mixture that is at least 51% corn, aged in new, charred oak containers, distilled to no more than 160 (U.S.) proof (80% alcohol by volume),  entered into the barrel for aging at no more than 125 proof (62.5% alcohol by volume), bottled (like other whiskeys) at 80 proof or more (40% alcohol by volume) it can be called Bourbon.

Do the same thing in Canada, guess it is called whiskey.  It's all in the name though the product is or could be identical

Also as this suit may drag on, the use of bourbon (or whiskey) may help many of us endure.  

Hah - now I'm going to see the word Scouts and think Bourbon. :)

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8 minutes ago, ParkMan said:

Hah - now I'm going to see the word Scouts and think Bourbon. :)

Many of us crossed that bridge a while back.....helps while unpacking gear back at the house on Sundays

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1 hour ago, ParkMan said:

Sorta.  I see the GSUSA point.  They have been recognized as the Scouting organization that provides services to girls for 100 years and are claiming that they are the only organization allowed to use the term "Scouts" in association with programs for girls.  I am nor versed in the legal rules here, but it seems clear to me that they own the term "Girl Scouts" (upper case).  It's not clear to me that they own the term "scouts" or "girl scouts" (lower case).  So, in the context of programs for boys, it's fine for the BSA to say "Scouts".  In the context of programs for girls, their claim is that it is not OK.

Again, I don't hear the argue that the BSA cannot provide these programs - just that they cannot provide the programs for girls and then call them Scouts, scouts, or girl scouts.

I'm trying to think of a similar analogy

I see it like a cola war.  Imagine if Pepsi and Coke didn't have strongly distinct names.  Instead they were named "West Cola" and "East Cola" and divided the market using the Mississippi river.   West Cola would only market to people west of Mississippi.  East Cola would market to people east of Mississippi.  Today, we'd call that agreement anti-competitive and illegal.   

Then, imagine "East Cola" (Pepsi) gets all these calls from people west of the Mississippi saying sell to us.  We like your product better.  So, then East Cola decides to market to everyone and decides to call themselves "Cola New".  

I think West Cola would respond exactly like GSUSA.  There is no new name East Cola could use that would help things.  The real issue is East Cola is now selling west of the Mississippi as brand uniqueness depended on each selling to their own separate market as the names, trademarks, terms were just too close.  

I'm not a lawyer, but it's hard to unravel branding when the uniqueness came from agreeing to not compete and not the branding itself.  

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I looked back at some of the Pepsi vs Coke lawsuits.  Coke responded once that “... (it) seems as if Pepsi would prefer to fight in the courts rather than the marketplace.”  While I don’t see this as a fight, GSUSA seems to, and instead of focusing inward to see why girls are not joining (or leaving) they are fighting in the media and court.  That may work short term but long term parents and kids will find and choose the best fit for them (or none)... regardless of program names.

BSA is offering refunds to any girls who joined Cub Scouts thinking it was Girl Scouts.  Surbaugh also notes that Scouts BSA was intentionally chosen vs Scouts.

      

Edited by Eagle1993
Typo
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What if Girl Scouts started a Boys program called   Scouts GSUSA.  . . .

Then you saw flyers and videos and people talking about boys could now join Boy Scouts GSUSA units. 

Parents begin thinking Boy Scouts had join forces with with Girls Scouts to form something new called Scouts GSUSA.

When you call out that it is not cool that they are using the term Boy Scouts, because that belongs to the BSA they would say. . .

"Oh, no we are Scouts GSUSA! Sorry about the confusion, we will send out a powerpoint slide to tell everyone not to say Boy Scouts GSUSA."

. . . then parents, the general public,  and kids continue to call the new units of boys in Scouts GSUSA  "Boy Scouts" and you end up with units in the BSA and GSUSA both being called "Boy Scouts" by the general public. . .

     Would BSA have any problem with that?

   

 

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12 minutes ago, cocomax said:

What if Girl Scouts started a Boys program called   Scouts GSUSA.  . . .

Then you saw flyers and videos and people talking about boys could now join Boy Scouts GSUSA units. 

Parents begin thinking Boy Scouts had join forces with with Girls Scouts to form something new called Scouts GSUSA.

When you call out that it is not cool that they are using the term Boy Scouts, because that belongs to the BSA they would say. . .

"Oh, no we are Scouts GSUSA! Sorry about the confusion, we will send out a powerpoint slide to tell everyone not to say Boy Scouts GSUSA."

. . . then parents, the general public,  and kids continue to call the new units of boys in Scouts GSUSA  "Boy Scouts" and you end up with units in the BSA and GSUSA both being called "Boy Scouts" by the general public. . .

     Would BSA have any problem with that?

   

 

Not sure - but I'd hope not.  

Unless this lawsuit is just a warning shot to remind the BSA not to try and co-opt the term Girl Scouts, I find it very hard to believe this lawsuit is really about the brand confusion.  How many people really get duped into joining the wrong unit.  Other than a few instances of the really clueless, do folks really accidentally sign up for Cub Scouts when they thought that they wanted Daisies or Brownies?  

I think this is really "West Cola" telling "East Cola" not to use the term Cola in the west.

My other thought it that this has nothing to do with stopping the BSA, but instead delaying things.  Imagine if there is an injunction preventing the BSA from using the terms "Scouts BSA" or "Scouts" at all for anything to do with girls for the next 3-5 years while lawsuits work through the courts.  In the spring, no more "Scout Me In" and instead it's the BSA promoting "join our leadership and outdoor educational program for girls"

Edited by ParkMan
clarifying word
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