Lawyer Finds Humor in North Face's Threatened Litigation Over 'South Butt'
ST. LOUIS (CN) - An attorney scoffed at North Face's threat of suing his client over a parody clothing line called South Butt, saying the company's case was about as good "as Helen Keller with a rake on a golf course."
North Face, a popular outdoor clothing manufacturer, has demanded that 18-year-old Jimmy Winklemann stop his South Butt clothing line. The South Butt line is a parody of North Face, whose lawyer claims the South Butt line is confusingly similar.
Winklemann's attorney, Albert Watkins, finds the claim humorous.
"North Face has indicated as a matter of record that the public will somehow be confused by the South Butt product," Watkins said in a statement. "There appears to be little recognition, if any, that the savvy of consumers precludes anyone from confusing a face with a butt."
Watkins told North Face that it could buy out Winklemann for $1 million, but North Face refused. Watkins used the Helen Keller analogy when asked if North Face had a case.
Winklemann is a freshman at the University of Missouri. He said he started the clothing line to help out his parents.
"The economy is tough," Winklemann said. "I know my parents are working hard to help me out with college, I took steps to contribute and now I am being bullied into submission."
Watkins said it's his job to make sure that doesn't happen.
"In the end, no pun intended, North Face has to understand that Jimmy may be bright and creative, but he is an 18-year-old college freshman with a total net worth which precludes him from buying beef for dinner," Watkins said. "Perhaps North Face and other mega-corporations should embrace his spirit and talents and not smack him across the butt with threats of litigation."