Name change- not the icing on the Cake for Cake Boss?
by Herb Fluke
Now with all due respect to Discovery Communications TLC”s parent company, the creators of Cake Boss-Shouldn’t the first thing you do when you take a name for a business is do a simple search for that name before deciding to use that name ? Especially in the Internet age. Especially for a high budget reality show like Cake Boss. It seems Discovery Communications didn’t think they had to or it wouldn’t matter, and now a Seatle software company: Masters Software Inc; has come foreward to say that they own the name Cake Boss having used it two years before the show ever hit the airways to market a business management software for professional cake bakers called CakeBoss.
Seatle Judge Richard A. Jones ruled on July 16th, 2010 in Masters Software Inc’s favor and granted a preliminary injunciton which bars Discovery Communications, TLC’s parent company, from using the name at the end of the third season pending a future trial. And that also means the name cannot be used on any associate merchandising.
Buddy Valastro known to millions of fans (which all seem to be waiting on line everyday in front of Carlo’s bakery in Hoboken,) can’t be called the Cake Boss any longer? That’s like not being able to call Alex Rodriquez of the Yankees A-Rod or Donald Trump the Donald. Everyone knows Mr. Valastro as the Cake Boss. Especially here in Hudson County-Cake Boss country.
Take a drive down Hoboken’s Washington Street and there are banners on every corner declaring Hoboken as home of the Cake Boss. What do we do with the Banners?
Cake Boss” premiered on TLC in April 2009. Masters Software co- owners Jon and Kelly Masters began marketing their Cake Boss software in 2007. When in court Kelly Masters stated that she contacted Discovery Communications when the show was first announced it would air Cake Boss in 2009 and Discovery Communications declined to change the name stating that no one would confuse the Cake Boss show with Masters’ Cake Boss software.
She also stated that as a result of the show’s success fans of the show began to contact Kelly and Jon Masters website www.cakeboss.com asking for custom cakes to be made from Carlo’s Bakery in Hoboken. She further acknowledged that all though it brought increased traffic to their site it was annoying. Judge Jones also acknowledged that the Masters Software Inc Cake Boss site was gaining favor from the shows success.
Our company had a similar problem five years ago when we called our Bayonne Observer website www.insidebayonne.com we were contacted by representatives of ebay claming we couldn’t use the site because the word ebay was clearly spelled out in the middle of our websites name www.insidebayonne.com
We assured the representative for ebay that the name of our site was promoting the city of Bayonne, New Jersey and that it was a coincidence that the name ebay was spelled out and also that the city of Bayonne was in existence much longer than ebay and we would not be changing our websites name. Nor would we be selling and auctioning off merchandise on our site. After careful review they agreed and said it would be fine to continue to use our name www.insidebayonne.com.
We were shocked to have even heard from ebay thinking how did a big company like ebay know who we were? We were told by a ebay representative that whenever a website is registerd and if ebay appears anywhere within a websites name -they find out.
In Discovery Channel’s case the Master’s told them they had a software product named Cake Boss and they did nothing. Even Judge Jones stated in the court that they should of conducted a simple search. In no way are we knocking Discovery Communications decision to not change the name in 2009, that was their decision to make but come on guys -look at the end result. Buddy Valastro is the Cake Boss, not Cup Cake, Cake Primo or Top Cake or Birthday Cake Boss or Choclate Cake Guy .
So what happens now? What name do they call the Cake Boss show and for that matter Buddy Valastro? Everyone knows him as the Cake Boss.
We would love to hear your suggestions for a new name. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org and we will post the names you suggest here on our website or one of our staff will wait on the long line to get into Carlo’s Bakery and give the suggestions to the Cake -Guy in person.