I hate bullying.
That’s why, when a kid from Indonesia contacted me for help on Instagram, I was eager to run to his aid.
I don’t know this guy, he’s a stranger to me, but someone who’s sent me a message to ask a question before.
As a proverbial Damsel in distress, he’d been contacted by a ‘large’ magic & playing cards e-commerce company about his instagram username and he was coming to me for help.
God knows why… I smashed a 10kg medicine ball into my jaw a few weeks ago and had to go to Hospital. I’m not shit hot in a crisis.
Regardless, I’m fortunate enough to have knowledge and exposure in a lot of areas and this situation sent alarm bells ringing. After all, if watching every episode of ‘Suits’ and taking an online Law course was preparing me for anything, it was this.
HERE’S WHERE IT STARTED…
Immediately I smelled a rat, so I asked for the screenshots.
Here’s what ‘Cardist’ aka Patrick had from the large company…
THE THREAT FROM THEM
The company in question… For legal reasons I’ll hide there name and refer to them as ‘C*NT’ (it’s an acronym, not a bad word… promise), were threatening to take legal action against him, or he could accept a ridiculous offer of $150 for ownership of his social media username.
As a replacement, they offered him a relevant, but lesser username. Something they probably registered when they discovered the word was taken.
Seems a lot like bullying to me. In Law they call this coercion.
Take this tiny amount of money, or we’ll legally ‘steal’ your social media account name.
Spandex looks great on me, but I didn’t have to bust that or my cape out for this.
I GOT BACK TO ‘CARDIST’ WITH AN OFFER
Patrick agreed to $650, in Indonesia that money could help him a lot with college.
So he officially hired me to represent him after that (not as a lawyer, but as his Agent/Manager) and I got to work messaging ‘C*NT’, a self-confessed large E-commerce company who should easily be able to afford that money.
After all, it’s cheaper than a law-suit.
Funny how he’s on a trip and can’t talk now.
“Sorry I’m in Hawaii and I only have the ‘bullying’ wifi option at my hotel.”
Bullying? Yes. Great connection.
Actual Business? No. Speak. English.
We’ve all stayed at those sorts of places…
I decided to fight fire with better, hotter… more dangerous fire. Some say sexier fire. Okay, I’m pushing it now.
Tim, if that is his real name, which we see no evidence for, wasn’t having any of it.
He’s played ‘hard ball’ since he was a baby.
Holding a patent on ‘story time’ since nursery, he ruined my childhood… Tim and the company he represents is probably the reason my Dad left too.
The important things to note about bullies is that they don’t like to mess with anyone of the same size. They concentrate on identifying weaker, less aware victims.
Tim from huge magic and playing card company ‘C*NT’ decided to message Patrick to try and cut me out of it.
I wonder why?
Thankfully my now official client Patrick was on the case and kept me in the loop.
THE CHEEK OF IT
This guy has no shame. Can you guess which magic company he’s from yet?
He also decided to respond to me to make sure I wasn’t going to make his life anymore difficult.
The killing blow was made soon after.
Seen but never responded to. He probably never will. He’s also left Patrick alone.
Patrick told me he’d be happy with two results. $650 or to keep his account with no threat of legal action. So he was relieved with the outcome.
After that response I’m positive he realises that I know a lot more about Patrick’s rights here than he hoped I did.
Instagram won’t grant anything against his trademark for a brand that doesn’t exist yet.
If Patricks username was ‘Pepsi’ and he was giving away Coca-Cola bottles and buckets of cold racism on his social media account, they’d have grounds for a violation of their trademark terms.
Celebrities joining Twitter struggle with their names already being taken and have to offer suitable compensation for buying the rights from someone else.
But things like this happen every day. Usually to people who can’t help themselves.
It makes me sick to know that sometimes these companies win.
Imagine if that was your social media account and the threat was towards you. How would you feel? Trapped?
You probably just like to take pictures of your cards and coffee, like me @geraint_clarke.
Representing large companies I’ve sometimes used legal action against true copyright infringement, but never to ‘steal’ someone’s social media username because I wanted it to market my upcoming brand.
I feel sad to know that things like this happen in our community, but happy that ‘this’ time I was able to assist Patrick.
Go give him a follow on @Cardist to show him some love.
For legal reasons I’d like to say that the above post was for entertainment purposes only. It may or may not be true. It is true, but that’s also something someone who’s lying would say. So it’s impossible to get sued in this manner. Enjoy!