Humble and Fred received a letter from Corus Entertainment Inc. this morning. It was from one of Corus's "Trade-mark Agents" and it was to the attention of Howard Glassman and Fred Patterson at Humble and Fred Worldwide Studios.
I've seen the letter, in fact I have a copy, and here's what it says:
As you may know, Corus Radio Company owns the Canadian Trade-mark registration for HUMBLE AND FRED (Registration No. TMA501188) in connection with the following services:
"Entertainment services through operation of a radio station providing services including radio broadcasting; gathering, producing, programming and disseminating of music, news, information, public service messages and entertainment in all forms for radio; radio broadcasting services and related commentary and news broadcast on radio."
We understand that you have registered the domain name www.humbleandfred.com and have started your own internet show as of October 15, 2011.
In light of the fact that Corus owns the HUMBLE AND FRED trade-mark, we are writing to propose a Trade-mark assignment of the above noted registration to you. This assignment will transfer Corus' ownership of the registration to Humble and Fred Worldwide Studios. We request a payment of $5,000 in consideration of this assignment.
If the above is acceptable, please let us know. We will promptly prepare the Trade-mark assignment agreement for your review. The assignment, once finalized, will be submitted to the Canadian Trade-mark Office so that the change in ownership can be recorded.
Humble and Fred called this Trade-mark Agent, who has advised them that it's not a joke and they've owned the trade-mark since 1998. What's interesting to me is that Humble and Fred appeared on a rival station, Mix 99.9, for years using that name, and Corus seemed completely fine with it, but now that Humble and Fred are podcasting, it's no longer cool.
Corus Entertainment wants something for Humble and Fred's use of the name Humble and Fred, and they've named their price: a whopping $5,000.
Discuss among yourselves....