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Michael Hallatt, a Canadian in Vancouver, British Columbia, spent hundreds of thousands of dollars at Trader Joe's in less than two years, but the grocer wants him to stop shopping at the offbeat chain.

Hallatt, 53, runs a store called Pirate Joe's across the Canadian border where there are no Trader Joe's stores, the national retailer says in a lawsuit. Trader Joe's, based in Monrovia, California, sued for an injunction against Hallatt's store and damages as a result of trademark infringement, false endorsement, false advertising and other allegations.

Hallatt resells products including Trader Joe's Organic Hummus Dip, Charmingly Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies, and Milk Chocolate Covered Potato Chips, the company said a lawsuit filed with the U.S. District Court in Seattle in May. The company named Hallat and his businesses, Pirate Joe's and Transilvania Trading.

Hallatt says, "If Trader Joe's really was a person, he would be cool with this."

Trader Joe's has about 400 grocery stores in 30 states and the District of Columbia, including 14 stores in the state of Washington, which Hallatt has harmed the most with his cross-border operation, Trader Joe's says in its lawsuit.

"It's very typical of companies to think they have to bully little guys out of some sense of brand protection," Hallatt said.

In protest, Hallatt removed the "P" in his front window and website, converting signage into "Irate Joe's". His website states the catchphrase, "Unauthorized, Unaffiliated, Unafraid."

Trader Joe's also accuses Hallatt of "conduct that misleads and deceives consumers into falsely believing that Pirate Joe's and/or Transilvania Trading have been authorized or approved by Trader Joe's" the lawsuit states. Hallatt's store also is "visually similar to Trader Joe's stores, imitating Trader Joe's famous 'South Pacific' trade dress," the lawsuit states.

Alison Mochizuki, a spokeswoman for Trader Joe's, declined to comment due to pending litigation.

 

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Hallatt resells products including Trader Joe's Organic Hummus Dip, Charmingly Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies, and Milk Chocolate Covered Potato Chips, the company said a lawsuit filed with the U.S. District Court in Seattle in May. The company named Hallat and his businesses, Pirate Joe's and Transilvania Trading.

 

That's a big no-no.

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Yeah without their expressed written consent he's making money off their name. He's gonna get in trouble. 

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Yeah without their expressed written consent he's making money off their name. He's gonna get in trouble. 

 

Only if it's an internationally registered trademark.  If it's not, well, Canada's a different country, so there's not a lot they can do about it.

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Only if it's an internationally registered trademark.  If it's not, well, Canada's a different country, so there's not a lot they can do about it.

 

They could always make it one. 

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So, according to Hallat, it's OK to buy stuff from first party and resell it without the first party agree to any of it? And copying the visual style the first party stores has as well?

 

What a jerk.

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They could always make it one. 

 

Doesn't work like that. You don't get to do it after the fact.

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Doesn't work like that. You don't get to do it after the fact.

?

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trader-joes-pirate-joes-lawsuit.jpg

Thats horrible.

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?

 

Meaning, you have to register the trademark -before- some bugger starts to copy it. After the fact, it's already too late.

 

Don't get me wrong, what this guy is doing is pretty ######, but IF Trader Joe's don't have an international trademark, they may not be able to do a damn thing about it. Reselling products legally purchased products certainly isn't illegal.

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Reselling products legally purchased products certainly isn't illegal.

 

Say that to EA :)

 

btw: nice pic :laugh:

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Say that to EA :)

 

btw: nice pic :laugh:

 

 

EA don't get to make the law when it comes to reselling.

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Say that to EA :)

 

btw: nice pic :laugh:

 

There is a difference between software and a physical good. 

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EA don't get to make the law when it comes to reselling.

 

Of course not; in fact in many countries it will be illegal to stop someone to resell a product. In this case, this guys a jerk: he's actively selling items in a way to mimic to original store's, which is wrong.

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Of course not; in fact in many countries it will be illegal to stop someone to resell a product. In this case, this guys a jerk: he's actively selling items in a way to mimic to original store's, which is wrong.

 

I agree.  It's wrong, it's jerkish, but it's not illegal.

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Records indicate that Trader Joe?s has obtained a Canadian trademark, which it applied for in October 2010.

 

http://seattletimes.com/html/nationworld/2021635873_traderjoessuitxml.html

 

 

and lol at this

 

 

Hallatt usually spends $4,000 to $5,000 in cash during his weekly shopping trips. He used to go mainly to Bellingham, where more than 40 percent of credit-card transactions are with non-U.S. residents, according to the suit.

 

Once, to avoid being recognized, he decided to cross-dress. He was putting on a leopard muumuu, earrings and flowered flip-flops in a Rite-Aid parking lot when somebody called the police, figuring he was going to rob the store.

?My nail polish was not even dry when three cops showed up,? Hallatt recalled.

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And Pirate Joe's was reselling from 2010 onwards or before?

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he only opened the store in 2012,according to the article I posted.

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^ As well they should. He is disgusting.

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Maybe they should start selling in Canada too since it looks like there's a market for it.

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Sorry, couldn't resist...

post-44814-0-82178400-1376936753.jpg

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The problem is that he went about it the wrong way. His responses show how casual he is to the matter and naturally assumed it would be ok "If Trader Joes was a person he would ok with this" etc. Many companies have unofficial licences stores, these are not officially owned stores, just ones that are licensed  to sell the companies products, user their branding etc. Had he tried to see if Trader Joes would be ok with this and signed a contract, this would be different. 

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This guy's business is not much different than all those liquidation/overstock places that advertise "BRAND NEW SONY TV 70% OFF." You think that they are authorized resellers, or have licensed Sony's trademarks? Actually, those places would be even more of a competitor to Sony than this guy is to Trader Joe's. There is not a single Trader Joe's store in Canada, so he's not competing over their target market at all.

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