Send you to the junkyard if you’re not on your toes.
Tom Collins reports on an interesting decision allegedly made by UPS to terminate the services of a long-time outside firm. He quotes a remark attributed to Teri P. McClure, vice president and manager of the legal department, who recently told an audience in Atlanta:
…that she recently fired a firm that had worked for UPS for 40 years. Even after 40 years, they had not taken the time to understand the nature of UPS. Their attorneys keep calling the companyâ€™s brown delivery vehicles â€œtrucksâ€. â€œTheyâ€™re not called trucks,â€ she said. â€œTheyâ€™re called package cars. If you call them trucks, you donâ€™t understand the nature of our business.â€
This exchange was originally recounted in the Fulton County Daily Report, found on law.com here.
Yup, a search of the UPS site reveals 71 hits for the phrase “package cars.”
But a similar search for “brown trucks” yields 24 hits.
And a link to this page, which contains a reference to 64,000 examples of a certain UPS service mark: “Big Brown Trucks.” According to a search of that phrase using the USPTO engine, “Big Brown Truck” was registered by UPS effective May 17, 2005. Perhaps the attorney of record doesn’t understand the business.
Maybe if UPS had sent a model of one of these to each of their engagement partners to reinforce the “car” mindset, things would have been different:
I like the name of Mr. Collins’ weblog: morepartnerincome.com. Nice and direct. Rare–but not that there’s anything wrong with that.
Update (13 Jan 06): An alert reader points to this page on the UPS website. The tagline at the top of the page “We’re Going To Race the Truck. People Love The Truck” is a mark UPS filed with the USPTO on May 10, 2005 (serial no. 78626526). Perhaps the fired firm was staffed with NASCAR fans. By the way, my company uses UPS exclusively and I love the truck.