Legal dispute hits red nose charity
Sat, 10 Nov 2012 9:16a.m.
Legal action by an Australian charity over its trademark is threatening the future of Red Nose Day in New Zealand, which raises money for research into child illnesses.
Cure Kids has been told it can't use red noses anymore because the trademark belongs to the National Sids Council of Australia, the sudden infant death syndrome charity.
The Kiwi charity's chief executive, Vicki Lee, has called the intellectual property move "an underarm bowl" and insists the event will continue, Fairfax Media reports.
Cure Kids ran red nose days from 1989 to 1997 and revived them in 2010. Its Red Nose Day Comedy For Cure Kids event in August raised $1.3 million for its research.
Ms Lee said the dispute was sparked after she called the Australian council to buy some red nose stock.
"There's been exchanges in years gone by with stock and other things. They went quiet and then the next thing I know our trademark people [called].
"We are so disappointed," she said. "It's frustrating. I'm puzzled by it - we both have successfully run red nose days for years with no trouble."
Sids council chief executive Leanne Raven said she wanted to align the two charities more closely.
"It's about protection of a very strong brand. That's where we are coming from. We've built it over 25 years.
"People need to be clear what they are donating funds to," Ms Raven said. "It's about transparency. If Cure Kids could work with us... then there's no issue."
However, Ms Lee was adamant the New Zealand Red Nose Day would continue.
"There's no risk at all, we own it. It's ours. Full stop."
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10/11/2012 5:34:47 p.m.
If you dig deep into Australian Charities you will find that 90% collected goes to overinflated salaries for the organisers and the rest goes to where it's mean't to.
10/11/2012 4:47:50 p.m.
You know that a charity isn't a true charity anymore when it squabbles over something that another charity has been doing for years :( I always thought red noses were for cure kids. So what if there are two red nose days.
10/11/2012 3:21:27 p.m.
Clowns, That cute little raindeer. Well! I think no-one owns the red nose. Let everyone wear them. Too stupid if you ask me
10/11/2012 2:26:28 p.m.
Red Nose Day has been and always will be for SIDs. It's what I used to promote and wear one for... Can't Cure Kids get their own brand?
10/11/2012 11:34:01 a.m.
It seems that some charities may be a bit mean spirited! How can it hurt when the 2 operate 1000s of km apart in 2 different countries?
10/11/2012 10:29:57 a.m.
Rudolph the 'red nose' reindeer was their first, perhaps both charities should be paying him royalties.
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