The March 1 issue of Bicycle Retailer and Industry News (BRAIN) includes a story on the Specialized/Stumptown saga, which first broke on this site back on January 31st. BRAIN is a well-known bike industry trade magazine that goes out to every bike shop and manufacturer in the U.S. The article is not available on-line, but I’ve scanned a copy that you can download:
This story has already made its way around the world via the Web, and the opinion of nearly everyone on the Internet is that Specialized is doing the wrong thing. However my feeling is that Specialized cares much more about how their peers in the bike industry think about them, than just lowly Internet users.
Now the story will get in front of many people in the bike industry that may have missed it and there will be renewed pressure on Specialized to either walk away from their demands (not likely) or to make a settlement with Mountain Cycle that doesn’t hurt their perception in the industry as an overly litigious company.
Your numerous and thoughful responses (139 so far) left on the original posts made it into the BRAIN article, prompting the reporter to add:
“Not suprisingly, Portlanders have weighed in with their opinion. The story has provoked the most comments from site visitors out of any other Maus has posted.”
And they used this quote of mine:
“The Portland bike community is full of smart, active people that take time to make their voice heard when an important issue affects them. This was the worst community Specialized could have chosen to do something like this to.”
There are developments in this story but I can’t make them public yet. Stay tuned for the final chapter.
Background on this story:
- Specialized, Mountain Cycle disagree on “Stumptown”
- Specialized responds
- Copy of the cease and desist letter from Specialized’s legal team to Mountain Cycle (PDF)
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Thanks for posting this and keeping us in the loop on the issue, Jonathan. Way to get some great quotes in there!
thanks for sticking with the story and trying to keep pressure on Specialized to do the right thing.
I still can’t believe Mountain Cycle hasn’t counter-sued demanding compensation from Specialized for the inconvenience of having to defend against a frivolous lawsuit. Paying out lots of money is about the only thing that will stop the Specialized jerks.
I just bought a Specialized Tricross. I did a lot of research, it was the only bike that 1) fit me and 2) was available to ride and try locally from an excellent LBS (River City)
I found out about the MC/Specialized crap while doing some research. I agree Specialized is out of line from an ethical standpoint, but I also agree w/another poster who mentioned that this is the way our corporate legal-economic system is designed: to require outright aggression under the slightest possibility of threat. Specialized is just playing the same game that so many other corporations play, the same way they have to play it.
River City is a great bike store (some will disagree). They went above and beyond everyone else to help me explore all the options available to me, get me fitted, weren’t pushy at all. Boycotting Specialized is boycotting River City and other local Specialized dealers. That’s not fair to them.
What’s at stake here may be a deeper issue: trademark law, naming rights, etc etc etc. Instead of fighting the symptom, we should be fighting the root cause.
Portland, under democratic process, should be able to lease or conditionally sell its “brand labels” for revenue (what we call “public-private partnership” right?), or decide to grant them to local businesses for free if we want.
I wonder how the process went for Trek…did it just “inform” the city that it was going to use our name for its new bike or did it ask first? Is Trek using “Portland” for free?? If so, it’s just piggybacking off of Portland’s biking success, or even stealing.
I don’t think Specialized will be bothering Mountain Cycle any longer.
More news to follow….
to follow when? The suspense is killing me… 😉
I have not been given permoission to make an official statement yet.
tech, service, and warranty
Ah…. Thanks Tim. Thanks also for including your signature info. That gives your post a lot more credibility. We’ll be here when you are given the permission
A. “The only bike that fit me?” Seriously??
B. Cross Season is over, I’m sure RCB made you a great deal.
C. RCB IS a great shop.
D. I ride Specialized but think they are crap for 2 reasons.
1. I am having problems with the frame and their cheap components.
2. This lawsuit.
Surely it is lowly internet users who BUY their bikes so opinions should be heard -Lawyers should talk with PR departments before kicking off with silly actions unless of course it is all a PR Stunt that is going wrong big time ! Next stop could be Giant claiming ownership of the Giant’s Causeway in Ireland!