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A sleazy British company is making a fake Rolex clock that threatens Rolexes revenues ($13,000,000,000 in 2021).

17319 Views 214 Replies 67 Participants Last post by  Watchman Dan
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@Al.Macrest @Panerol Forte
Let it be. It seems that most people here are no longer interested in facts, but only in getting one over on the hated Rolex SA, at least verbally. The fact that every brand owner can lose the rights to his brand, which has usually been built up with a lot of effort and money, if he does not defend it, is also of little interest.
Rolex has every right to protect its trademarks, but the solution they have proposed is not the only way. The claim that Rolex lawyers have made, that a reasonable consumer will be confused, and come to believe these children's clocks are made by Rolex, is absurd. Rolex clearly thinks their customers are complete idiots based on this.

Rather than force this company to change their name, they could simply request a disclaimer, that these clocks are not affiliated with Rolex. Companies do this all the time on their web sites with respect to Rolex, and Rolex is fine with it. The manner in which Rolex is enforcing their rights is the issue for me personally.
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Is that actually the case, or is that just the narrative the press are taking because its hyperbolic and makes the action sound absurd. I haven’t seen the actual legal text.
Well, the remarks are in quotations in the article, so this is, without evidence to the contrary, a quote from the legal documents Rolex sent:

Lawyers for Rolex argued that the 'average, reasonably well informed consumer' would likely call the Rolex line of watches to mind when looking at the Oyster & Pop logo.

They added: 'Consumers will inevitably be misled into thinking that your products emanate from Rolex.'
Archer, the devil's in the details on this one. Have those other web sites actually entered into an agreement with Rolex to use one of their trademarked names? Or do they just sell watches that look a lot like Rolex, and may even descriptively mention Rolex in the nominative sense ("similar to..."), and have posted a disclaimer of their own accord to cover their bases?
Regardless if they have entered into an agreement or not, this is very commonly done. These are companies selling real Rolex parts, and generic Rolex parts. Since Rolex at one time actually supplied all these places with parts for resale, there's zero doubt that Rolex is aware of them and what they are doing. Some examples...

Cousins in the UK, so same jurisdiction as the Oyster & Pop clock company:

Screenshot Font Number Web page Software

Casker in the US:

Font Screenshot Number Logo Multimedia

Jules Borel in the US:

Font Rectangle Screenshot Magenta Electric blue

Otto Frei in the US:

Rectangle Font Parallel Number Screenshot

Esslinger in the US:

Font Line Parallel Screenshot Rectangle

I could go on, but you get the picture. These companies regularly use both the Rolex name, and the names of specific models.

Now if Rolex is willing to allow this - places selling actual parts for their watches so the association couldn't be more clear - without taking any action, then why would they go after a small operation like Oyster & Pop, where there's clearly (to anyone with even 1/2 a brain) no connection to Rolex?

Now if this isn't enough, let's look at Time Delay Corporation in the US...this has their disclaimer:

Product Font Poster Electric blue Advertising

So what do they make? Let's see:

Watch Light Product Clock Font

Yes, custom dials, as well as custom bezels. But let's focus on the dials, because that has Rolex's trademarked names all over them...but they have marks on the dials indicating they are made by Time Delay - see the very bottom text:

Font Number Document Screenshot

So in this context, where companies regularly sell products with Rolex trademarks on them, and sell products for Rolex watches without any legal action from Rolex, does it not seem a bit much that they go after a couple of women making clocks for kids with no real connection to Rolex or any of their products?

I can only speak for myself, but being in the industry, Rolex is generally seen as the big green bully of the watch world, and this particular action just reinforces that for me. They are not a company I would feel comfortable doing business with...
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How would they respond to this"

You've Tried The Rest
Now Try the X
ROLL X Toilet Paper

Making Your Business Our Business
View attachment 17180368
You mean this?

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😱 😆
Don't you always wipe your arse with Rolex? I do!
No, it doesn't seem a bit much because there's a huge distinction.
These examples are parts, and references to Rolex trademarked names are in the nominative sense as references. There's nothing illegal about that, nor could Rolex do anything about it. Oyster & Pop are using a trademarked name as a part of their trade name within the same trade. That's what got them in hot water. Rolex is not trying to bully them, but they're forced to do something about it because if they don't, other people making knockoff watches could use the Oyster name and there's nothing Rolex could do about it. This isn't really about Rolex bullying Oyster & Pop. It's about Oyster & Pop putting Rolex in a position where they have to defend the trademark so other entities don't abuse it. I can't make it any clearer than that.
So accompany making dials with the Rolex name is okay? Seriously?
Some people are so biased against Rolex it's blatantly obvious in the twisted, tortured logic.
Some people use the word "bias" without really understanding what it means...
Anyway, I published a line of technical books and repair manuals covering that brand. I wound up getting a nastygram from their attorneys saying I couldn't use the logo or even the brand name in any of my publications. My attorney's question to them was how can anyone write about your products without using the name? Further, this particular application is protected by the First Amendment (freedom of speech) and Uncle Sam has a LOT more firepower than you do (paraphrased slightly).

We reached a compromise - the line "Not a (brand) publication." appears on the front cover. End of problem.
That question from your attorney was a perfect illustration of the absurd. There's plenty of generically made service manuals out there - I have several Haynes manuals in my collection for example.

Just because a lawyer sends a letter, doesn't mean they actually have a valid case/argument.

The most frustrating thing for me about this Rolex overreach, is that it won't be tested in court, and Rolex knows it. They know that some small company making clocks that will be educating at least a few future Rolex owners how to tell time, doesn't have the resources to fight this, so they will win without it ever being tested.

The golden rule in action - he who has the gold, makes the rules.
Now for all you people now buying this clock as a strike against Rolex, I think Rolex would say you are just proving the point. There is now a whole category of people now buying the wall clock with "Oyster" on it, specifically for the purpose of giving to the man....using it as your wall clock, and not necessarily to use it as an educational toy. It's become a novelty item beyond it's use as an educational product.
This doesn't prove Rolex's point at all. Rolex has stated, through their lawyers, that people will buy these thinking that they are made by Rolex. People are certainly not doing that here.
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Thanks, but I'm not expecting a "Mea Culpa" anytime soon. When I have to fight a battle over the English language, I'm done.
If you accuse people of bias, you are saying that their views have no foundation or reason. You are certainly entitled to that view, however disliking the business practices of Rolex doesn’t fall into the area of being unfounded.

Of course you could just say “I'm done” and leave the conversation if it bothers you...
You don't have to fight a battle you already won, it's simply that some people never quit arguing and are willing reinterpret the dictionaries in a desperate hope to mark a winning point. It never ceases to amaze me to what extent people are willing to go to get the illusion that they got the last word, even if it's the wrong one 😂

Edit: see what I mean? look above 😉
So you believe that Rolex business practices are all fair and good?
It doesn't even matter. How is it germane to this thread? The incident is an independent event. When folks say something to the effect of, "You see? This is exactly what I expect from Rolex, and proves my point about them," what is exhibited is confirmation bias. Look it up. BTW, being biased doesn't require lack of foundation, it only requires that a person be prejudicial. Therefore your argument is flawed. Asking if Rolex practices are all fair and good is an exhibition of confirmation bias, as if some opinion you hold about them has anything to do with this one independent event. The brain wants to believe it all fits a pattern, therefore Rolex is in the wrong here by this way of thinking.
You have made an accusation of bias in people’s reactions to this. It’s only bias if if the criticism is unfair, that’s the point. If you don’t believe there are patterns in the way businesses act, that’s surprising...
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Confusion is not the only thing a trademark infringer can do. The trademark owner must also defend against trademark "dilution" which is the element being raised here.

Trademark "dilution" is the likelihood that the use of the mark will diminish the strength or value of the trademark by reducing the mark's distinctiveness or destroying the mark's image by connecting it to something negative or devaluing. No likelihood of confusion needs to be shown.

This can happen in one instance, or over a long period of time. For example, if "oyster" is used by O&P, and then by Tonka, and then by Mattel, and then by a pizza shop, and then by [add infringer A, B and C], then the word "oyster" becomes diminished as a brand. It's not so much confusion as the fact that it's been used so many times in so many different applications, perhaps some in a negative way, that it doesn't have any value anymore.

Or it could be one bad use, like using the word "oyster" for a drug helps that helps with constipation (with a clock symbol to boot)...just a joke example by me, but I hope you see the point.

So the word "oyster" becoming somewhat of a joke because of this issue, people buying the clock just because of the word "oyster" in conjunction with the negativity brought out by this issue, is evidence that the word "oyster" is actually being devalued.

So again, the trademark owner is under a constant duty to protect their trademark or run the risk of losing their trademark or the value of their trademark.
Again, people are buying these clocks to spite Rolex, does not prove Rolex’s point regarding dilution.

I don’t disagree that Rolex has the right to protect their trademark, but people buying clocks from this company isn’t proving that their arguments are correct. Unfortunately we will never know if this is a valid defence, because it will never go to court.
On the other hand, I don't follow the actions of Rolex or any other watch company. I'm just not that into it. Although if you work in the industry, I could see how you would experience the contrasting differences in how watch companies operate and I think that's why we see this differently. As someone who's not looking at Rolex's history of behavior, I see this thread as reflecting an independent event. As such, I don't see their actions to be egregious. They're in the right, they know they're in the right, they're operating within the bounds of the law in protecting their trademark, and they'll win. OTOH if a person has a long disgust of the company, then this event represents one more piece of kindling on the already-lit fire. That's where the confirmation bias kicks in.
I don’t disagree that Rolex has the right to protect their trademarks. I disagree with how they are going about it. If some of the previous information posted is true, it appears that there may have been some agreement between the two parties to have the O&P trademark registered under children’s education and toys. If that’s true, then this is pretty typical of how Rolex does things.

I understand you are ignorant of how they work in the industry, so you don’t see how they abuse their business partners, and have done so over decades (even requiring government intervention, a consent decree, and fines for violations of same in the US). What you call bias is my experience and recognizing the reality of how “charitable“ this company really is. Ignorance isn’t usually a valid defence, but I suppose it works in the Rolex subforum.

I also note that the Rolex defenders who jump on any criticism made against the company, didn’t bother to take issue with the OP calling the British company “sleazy” which seems quite unwarranted. But I don’t expect unbiased opinions (using your definition) here I suppose...

Cheers, Al
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The topic title of this thread was clearly sarcasm/humor and not meant literally.
Fair enough...
Just a point - the term "oyster" can be used in any other industry or undertaking in categories that Rolex hasn't registered the trademark for. So a pizza shop using the term or a sportswear company using the term wouldn't attract Rolex's ire or give them a case against that business, because they are not competing in the range of products. What brought Oyster & Pop to Rolex's attention is the fact that it's a clock, which is close enough to Rolex's business that they need to care. Usually, you don't license out trademarks. First, it dilutes your brand, because you didn't care for it enough that you traded it like a commodity and second, a trademark is meant to be your distinct mark(s) in your industry to distinguish you from all others.
I suppose Rolex could be considered (big) children's toys, so maybe they have a point after all...
But still, that history doesn't make actions in this specific case more or less egregious than they are.
So a pattern of behaviour is no different than a one off thing in your eyes? Interesting.
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seems to me nobody here has all of the information outside of what has been made publicly known. the sis&sis shop are playing to the public, presenting as a victim and playing on everyone's sympathy for the downtrodden. meanwhile rolex appears to be self-portraying as the ogre, not apparently caring how they are seen and only concerned that they protect their property at all costs.
What we certainly don't know, is if Rolex's claims are valid. It seems the lawyers are all assuming it would be, and that Rolex is in the right - not surprising here in the Rolex forum, but viewing this as an outsider, it seems the use of the word Oyster in this context is a tenuous link to Rolex at best.

Of course, this won't ever get tested, and the Rolex fanboys will believe that Rolex is true and noble as they have always been.
defend itself against infringing on rolex's trademark? maybe they shouldn't be infringing on the trademark because that's what this is all about. or have you not bothered to read all the comments here and in the other identical threads?
Once again, this assumes the "infringement" is real and proven. No formal judgement has been made on this...something to keep in mind...
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I understand that nothing is proven; what I'm saying/reiterating is if this is a case of trademark infringement then rolex has a responsibility to protect/retain their trademark. whereas others are just jumping in and simply calling rolex out for harassing some small mom&pop business which suggests to me that those comments are coming not from any awareness of the facts but from a particularly virulent band of rolex-haters who hate rolex because...rolex (not unlike a recent discussion where someone was trashing a brand and a specific watch simply because they kept missing out on the limited edition offerings and became spiteful because of it).
what's the saying...and the truth shall set ye free, hopefully before those villagers with torches and pitchforks get any closer
But the other "side" of this is people simply saying Rolex is right to protect their trademark. This makes an assumption that the claim Rolex is making (that's all it is - a claim) is true. I recall a bunch of lawyers jumping in when the case was filed by employees of a Rolex AD in the US for wrongful dismissal not that long ago, saying that the claims in their filing were just that - claims, and had to be treated with appropriate caution until proven. That sort of thinking appears to have gone out the window when it's Rolex doing the claiming. There is just an assumption that Rolex is in the right by those who are spouting the law.

I think regardless of the hate or love for Rolex one might have, the inequities in the "justice" system that a case like this exposes is something we should all be concerned about. Winning shouldn't be about money, and this in case that's all it's about...
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