Slathered, Yes… but Slandered?

Subway is suing Quiznos, more or less, because Quiznos ran a contest in which it asked people to make a video showing that Quiznos’ sandwiches were superior to Subway’s. The resulting entries were posted on the web, of course, and, Subway alleges, made false claims and defamed their product. (The winning video is available in the story in the New York Times — and in my view it’s fairly wretched and wouldn’t have won the $10,000 prize in any contest I ran.) Apparently, the novel issue stems from the fact that Quiznos didn’t make the ads but only instigated their being made.

According to the NY Times, the matter is governed by Title 15, Chapter 22 of the U.S. Federal Code (Trademarks) (a.k.a. the Lanham Act) and the Communications Decency Act.

Bad taste(s) all round.

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