The courts have agreed that Johnson & Johnson’s lawsuit against the Red Cross over the use of the red cross was one of last year’s top 10 dumbest marketing moves.
J&J, which also uses the symbol, filed suit in U.S. District Court in Manhattan against the American Red Cross and four of the charity’s licensees, seeking to prevent them from using the “Greek red cross on a white ground,” claiming that it is a trademark violation and that the humanitarian group was barred from using it for commercial purposes. But U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff disagreed, noting that the American Red Cross had used the emblem for more than a century and was authorized to do so by various Geneva Conventions and the U.S. Congress.
I really want to know who got the job of telling the board of directors, “Oh by the way, we’re suing the Red Cross.” There was no possible good outcome from this. Even had they won in the courts no consumer without a law degree would have understood it.