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Thread: EAA suing the SOS Brothers?

  1. #31
    DaleB's Avatar
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    And where do people come up with the idea that either beer consumed by adults, or women dressed slightly more conservatively than one would see at poolside or might see in a park, is somehow immoral or not "family friendly"? Most restaurants serve beer, and it's neither illegal, immoral, nor particularly uncommon for young women to dress like that in summer, thank heaven.

    Even EAA must think serving beer is "family friendly", since beer sales occur at AV on the grounds. That leaves only the supposed trademark infringements. The reversed swoosh thing... maybe. I dont think a "reasonable person" would think it's "confusing", but there seems to be a paucity of reasonable persons involved. The other airplane themed stuff... come on. EAA is not the NFL, and they shouldn't be acting like them. Are we now to think that any mention of an aircraft or image of a jet airliner is a trademark infringement? Should Airventure become like "that large annual professional football contest that must not be named"? Sheesh. Lets get real.

    I'm unhappy that a portion of my dues is being wasted to further earn the ill will of the Sosnoski family, along with that of (no doubt) a fair number of locals, and a fair number of its own members.
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  2. #32
    rwanttaja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CHICAGORANDY View Post
    On topic, I do agree it is a wee disingenuous for EAA to fret over beer and bikinis, when it has NO problem with beer and Continental Tire lady chesticles. Who'd a thunk that scantily clad lady types would be a consumer draw? (said NO ONE..EVER) lol
    I certainly think EAA's "morality" argument fails, when the EAA supports on-site liquor sales and doesn't regulate on-site spokesmodel attire. Ditto the infringement claim, when myriad local businesses are allowed to mention "Airventure" in their signage or advertising.

    This smacks of too many business/legal types saying, "We CAN sue them," and not enough community-oriented staffers at a high enough level to ask, "What does it really hurt?" Given the past history, this sounds personal, not a dispassionate business decision.

    Ron Wanttaja

  3. #33

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    Does anyone know where Jack Pelton lives? Is he involved in the Oshkosh community?

    I ask because many locals have told me that the Poberezny’s were “Milwaukee people” who had nothing to do with the Oshkosh community.


    BJC

  4. #34

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    A 2012 EAA article mentions that he and his wife live in Wichita, KS.

    http://eaavintage.org/meet-jack-pelt...-of-the-board/

    I don't personally feel that where a CEO lives in relationship to their HQ location is an important issue, but certainly EAA is a HUGE presence in the Oshkosh community. Beyond AirVenture's massive annual $$$ influx they are also a year-round employer and revenue stream for that whole area.

    I would presume that Mr. Pelton, as a pilot himself, as well as a potential regional airline passenger, would find that commuting to Oshkosh from Wichita as his duties require is not an insurmountable task?
    Last edited by CHICAGORANDY; 12-01-2019 at 11:42 AM.
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  5. #35
    Airmutt's Avatar
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    Ron you’re spot on. I can’t count how many times AirVenture is used in radio ads and see businesses with “Welcome AirVenture Fans” banners, to includes eateries serving alcohol and bars. Honestly I’ve walked past SOS hundreds of times and never heard or associated Beer Venture with them. Who knew??

    Did you read the Prayer for Relief? The last last few articles ask for reimbursement for damages of unspecified monetary amounts including reimbursement for all legal fees. It would be interesting to be able to sit in on the proceedings to see how EAA proves how it has been harmed by off site beer sales and bikini servers. I don’t think in today’s world a jury is going to find for EAA on all counts of the complaint.

    EAA may get a win in the courts but they are already losing in the court of public opinion.
    Dave Shaw
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  6. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by rwanttaja View Post

    This smacks of too many business/legal types saying, "We CAN sue them," ...
    Thing is, you CANNOT let lawyers run your business. Lawyers are great for advice, but they have a desire to do lawyerly things, not resolve things or walk away when appropriate.

    You should see my new hangar lease, written by lawyers, rather than aviation people. Sheesh...

  7. #37
    rwanttaja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Airmutt View Post
    Ron you’re spot on. I can’t count how many times AirVenture is used in radio ads and see businesses with “Welcome AirVenture Fans” banners, to includes eateries serving alcohol and bars. Honestly I’ve walked past SOS hundreds of times and never heard or associated Beer Venture with them. Who knew??
    Trademark protection is a real thing, but it's normally handled by a harsh letter rather than a lawsuit.

    If I write an article that says, "...Use pop rivets to hold it in place," me or the magazine where it's published will get a nasty letter saying something along the lines of: "POP™ brand rivets are trademarked by Stanley Engineered Fasteners. In the future, if you use the term, it should be capitalized and include the trademark symbol."

    Certainly, trademark protection is important. A lot of trademarked terms have come into common usage ("Aspirin", "Linoleum," "Thermos," etc.) and the companies involved probably did lose some market traction.

    And, quite possibly, EAA did send similar letters to SOS. But such letters *do* establish that EAA is protecting its brand.

    I don't see "Beerventure" as infringing on EAA's trademark. There's a group of summer camps in Texas called "Kidventure" yet EAA claims that as a trademark. Are they suing them, as well?

    Kidventure in Texas has been existence since 1994...when did EAA trademark "Airventure"?

    Amusing bit of research. I looked at the back issues of EAA Sport Aviation magazine, looking for the first mention of "Airventure." I found it in May 1993. In an article about the Spruce Goose, written by Penn Stohr.

    Of the Evergreen AirVenture Museum, in McMinnville, Oregon.

    It isn't until 1998 that "Airventure" comes up with a lot of hits in the magazine. A google search for "Airventure '97" comes up blank (no '97), while "Airventure '98" gets lots of hits. Now, of course, EAA could have filed for the trademark several years before and just not used it until '98.

    This looks to me to be similar to SLAPP suit..."Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation." Basically using corporate funds to bully a smaller entity to cease a certain action, whether or not the action itself is contrary to law. I was once hit with a SLAPP suit.

    SOS could undoubtedly use "KidVenture" and the Evergreen museum name to counter the validity of EAA's trademark infringement claim. The question is, can they afford it?

    As EAA members, we have to ask ourselves: Is this action beneficial to the membership? Whether or not they can bully SOS into compliance? Is this what we want our dues spent on?

    Quote Originally Posted by Airmutt View Post
    Did you read the Prayer for Relief? The last last few articles ask for reimbursement for damages of unspecified monetary amounts including reimbursement for all legal fees. It would be interesting to be able to sit in on the proceedings to see how EAA proves how it has been harmed by off site beer sales and bikini servers. I don’t think in today’s world a jury is going to find for EAA on all counts of the complaint.

    EAA may get a win in the courts but they are already losing in the court of public opinion.
    They're asking for a jury trial, which indicates to me that they're going to push the "family-friendly event" theme. The Midwest *is* a bit prudish; they may hope to sway jurors with claims of alcohol imbibing and scantily-clad ladies.

    Depending on how much defense SOS can afford, this could be dangerous...considering how EAA not only sells liquor itself and allows paying vendors to feature half-nekkid females, but has, in the past, hushed-up at least one alcohol-related on-site event by a featured airshow performer.

    Again...is this what our membership dues should be spent on?

    Ron Wanttaja

  8. #38
    Mike Switzer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rwanttaja View Post
    They're asking for a jury trial, which indicates to me that they're going to push the "family-friendly event" theme. The Midwest *is* a bit prudish; they may hope to sway jurors with claims of alcohol imbibing and scantily-clad ladies.
    If so, all the SOS bros have to due is ask for a change of venue to Madison. (Also known as the Berkeley of the Midwest)

  9. #39
    rwanttaja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Switzer View Post
    If so, all the SOS bros have to due is ask for a change of venue to Madison. (Also known as the Berkeley of the Midwest)
    I fly into Milwaukee four times a year and drive to Oshkosh. I'm always amused by the big XXX business...with its huge billboards....just a few miles short of Oshkosh. Family friendly, indeed.

    I'll doubt this will ever get to trial, but strongly suspect there'll be a change in venue. There are probably few people in the Oshkosh area that can claim to be neutral or unaffected by EAA.

    Ron Wanttaja

  10. #40
    I don’t post often, but this warrants taking time to do so.

    EAA, I wish you’d hear your members. This is wrong, petty, and unnecessary.

    I cannot believe how far this corporation has come from its roots. I vote with my dollars, and you’ve lost mine. Wow.

    Robbie Culver
    Naperville, IL

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