Trademark rights are protected through registration, maintenance, watching, and enforcement. These precautions, and proper use help preserve the ability of marks to indicate the source of a product or service to consumers.
On Monday September 19th, 2011 the Intellectual Property Law Firm of Merchant & Gould in Minneapolis, MN representing Polaris Industries Inc. and its subsidiary Indian Motorcycle International LLC (IMI) contacted Crazy Horse Motorcycles LLC in Kent, Washington for what they consider an Indian Motorcycle Trademark infringement. The subject of this letter is to stop the use by Crazy Horse Motorcycles of an Indian Headdress logo and design used as their corporate logo, tank and fender badges.
John White from Crazy Horse Motorcycles sent me an email/letter stating the following “It seems that Crazy Horse’s logo is upsetting the stakeholders at Polaris. I think we sold a total of ten tank logos and perhaps 15 fender logos. I am not sure who is making the risk management decisions at Polaris but they are going to end up exposing their very weak mark to the point of public domain. They just (blip) with the wrong guy…”
I am not sure what he means by “Polaris is going to end up exposing their very weak mark to the point of public domain”, but I am pretty sure he is going to explain his arguments in “comments”. I publish below the letter of cease and desist sent to Crazy Horse Motorcycles (minus numerous attachments and exhibits with sketches and drawings) by which Polaris/IMI claims all its Indian Motorcycle trademarks and demonstrate its intent to enforce them. (I added the Crazy Horse Indian Headdress Logo below the letter). To follow…
Below is the Crazy Horse Indian Headdress Logo. I let you judge.