Booklicious: Want a Bestseller? Rip Off the Jack Daniel's Label Design

July 26, 2012


I'm not really into Jack the drink, but Jack the gentleman just stole my heart. 

Earlier this year, writer Patrick Wensink posted the cover to his new book, Broken Piano for President (above, right), on his blog. Not too long after, he received what he called "perhaps the most polite cease and desist ever written" from an attorney for Jack Daniel's — here's an excerpt:

 We are certainly flattered by your affection for the brand, but while we appreciate the pop culture appeal of Jack Daniel's we also have to be diligent to ensure that Jack Daniel's trademarks are used correctly. ... As an author you can certainly understand our position and the need to contact you. You may even have run into similar problems with your own intellectual property. ... In order to resolve this matter, and because you are both a Louisville "neighbour" and a fan of the brand we simply request that you change the cover design when the book is reprinted. If you would be willing to change the design sooner than that (including on the digital version) we would be willing to contribute a reasonable amount towards the cost of doing so.

Is that not the most charming lawyer you've ever encountered? You can read the rest of his very personable letter on Patrick's blog here. Incidentally, the book is selling quite well, thanks to all the press.


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