The cover of Patrick Wensink’s book, Broken Piano For President, has produced some literature of its own by the means of a cease-and-desist letter. Wensink recieved the letter from Jack Daniel’s Properties — the owner of the Jack Daniel’s trademarks.
It is not much of an argument after looking at the cover for the book, to see the strong resemblance to the label of Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Tennessee Whiskey. The font used has been changed but the border and color scheme are exact replicas found on the label.
This dispute is unique in terms of the way Jack Daniel’s decided to handle the trademark infringement. The letter was downright polite and may be the nicest cease-and-desist letter written to date. Jack Daniel’s Properties went as far as to offer to help pay for the cost of designing a new cover.
Wensink explains that his publisher, Lazy Fascist Press, will not be taking them up on their offer. But he does agree the letter was unusally polite, “If it wasn’t signed by some lawyer, I’d imagine ol’ Gentleman Jack penning it himself, twirling his bushy mustache.”
Jack Daniel’s, a brand built on the reputation of a Southern Gentleman, may be boosting sales with this publicity. These days any publicity is good publicity, but the way they handled the situation has earned them kudos all over the internet.
Wensink is no stranger to supply and demand, while explaining the original cover, “that baby’s going to be a collector’s item.” Hey, you just never know.
Today we salute you, Jack Daniel’s, for making such a wonderful sour mash whiskey and making the legal world a little bit friendlier.