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WTF did walmart email me ??

Discussion in 'Black Hat SEO' started by smallwebkings, May 29, 2013.

  1. smallwebkings

    smallwebkings BANNED BANNED

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    Hello Hatters,
    last night I got email from walmart whose subject is "Notice of Walmart Trademark Rights Infringement [Case #63853]"

    And email is :

    To Whom It May Concern:


    Walmart is the owner of the well-known trademarks and trade-names "Walmart" and "Wal-Mart". As you are no doubt aware, Walmart, is a trademark used to identify products, services, activities and events related to Walmart.


    The trademarks, emblems, words and phrases of Walmart are exclusively used by Walmart and any other use by a third party constitutes trademark infringement.


    In connection to Walmart proprietary rights over its famous trademark we are notifying you of the following:


    It has come to our attention that our trademark Walmart appears as a metatag, meta title, meta description, keyword, URL, visible or hidden text on the URLs (full list below) associated with offending-domain.com without having obtained prior written authorization from Walmart. This practice infringes upon the exclusive intellectual property rights of Walmart.

    Code:
    
    mydomain.net
    http://mydomai.net/tag/walmart/
    
    http://mydomain.net/get-a-free-1000-walmart-gift-card-today/


    Also, by using such trademark, you have intentionally attempted to attract Internet users to your web site(s) or other online location(s), by creating a likelihood of confusion with the Walmart?s trademark as to the source, sponsorship, affiliation, or endorsement of your web site(s), online location(s), products or services.


    We trust that you will remove all metatags, meta titles, meta descriptions, keywords, URLs, visible or hidden texts including Walmart trademarks (or any variations thereof) presently appearing on the above-cited web site(s) and any other web site(s), or draw this issue to the attention of the appropriate person(s).


    As part of our Walmart Trademark Enforcement Program, be assured that we will continue to monitor your web site(s) to verify your compliance with this letter. Failure to do so will force us to defer this issue to our Trademark Lawyer for further actions.


    Should you require additional information or wish to further discuss this issue, please do not hesitate to contact the undersigned.


    Sincerely,


    Walmart Brand Protection


    Walmart Corporate
    508 SW 8th Street
    Bentonville, AR 72716-0505
    brandprotection@mm-walmart.com


    ..

    I don't know what happen i just promote CPA walmart gift card nothing else and I got good traffic on this page but due to notice email I disable my site today ..


    Please guys tell me what is this and what can i do ????

    thanks for reading this thread
     
  2. eyerish

    eyerish Regular Member

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    This is essentially a cease and desist letter from Walmart telling you to remove all references to their trademark. You are most likely 100% in the right, but the problem is that if they pursue you....who has deeper pockets? You can't afford to fight for your side...it will cost you way more to prove that you are right than it is worth promoting the gift cards. If you continue to promote it....use throwaway methods that aren't easy to track to you. Most likely they will not take it too far other than to have your site shut down if possible.
     
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  3. smallwebkings

    smallwebkings BANNED BANNED

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    is any one online ??
    Please reply this post
     
  4. eyerish

    eyerish Regular Member

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    You could also email them and tell them what you are doing. And if you are doing it wrong...how can you promote it and stay in compliance with them? Walmart probably doesn't have anything to do with this promotion.....which means they will eventually go after the sponsor as well.
     
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  5. jr_sci

    jr_sci Senior Member

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    I am afraid, you will have to remove the trademark and stay quite. Don't reply to the email.
     
  6. smallwebkings

    smallwebkings BANNED BANNED

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    Thanks
     
  7. smallwebkings

    smallwebkings BANNED BANNED

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    Yeah they just warn me to remove trademark .. But I disable my site at a time to see their response
     
  8. Duffers5000

    Duffers5000 Elite Member

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    Do what they say or they will lawyer up pretty quick...its not worth the hassle playing with big companies like this.
     
  9. eyerish

    eyerish Regular Member

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    Their intentions are clear....they aren't out to get you...they just want you to comply. There is no risk in replying to the email...but the above poster is right....the end result will be the same. Do what they ask.
     
  10. PurpleLaze

    PurpleLaze Registered Member

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    Company's scraping metadata as grounds for a C&D...that's a new one to me. It is their trademark, so I wouldn't recommend seo'ing/indexing a page for that kind of offer with ORM on the rise. Find another way to push it or roll on to another offer imo.
     
  11. leeshoes

    leeshoes Junior Member

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    On one hand I doubt they'd spend thousands of dollars suing little sites with like 100 visitors/day (if thats your case). On the other hand this is pretty scary.

    I would check with walmart to make sure this is a legit email address and physical address.

    If you want to continue promoting this product I would host the site on a russian webhosting company that ignores DCMA complaints. Search the forums there has been a lot of discussion about this lately
     
  12. proweb

    proweb Regular Member

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    This seems a bit fishy to me
    -No phone number
    -Sent via email

    All "serious" infringement notifications I've received from large companies were delivered physically via express mail.

    All personal/small business/scam infringement notifications I've received were via email.

    Walmart has a team of in-house lawyers that do this stuff legally where they have to keep record of every cease and desist request. This is why major companies will send their legal letters via express mail so they have a record that it was indeed delivered to you. They have no way of knowing if your email address was legit or if you received the message.

    If I were you I would find WalMart's corporate contact information and would contact the right person and ask if it is indeed a legitimate letter. I've done this a few times and every time the person told me "no, that was not sent by us, please ignore it".

    I'm not saying it's not walmart, but then again I'm not saying it couldn't be one of your competitors because some forms of Neg SEO involve sending phoney cease and desist requests.

    Just follow up with it by contacting walmart yourself.


    UPDATE:
    I did some research and the majority of other people who received this same message had the name "Walmart" in their domain name. Maybe they're going after people who have the name in their page URL now? Seems like a lot of unnecessary work for a company that large though.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2013
  13. webdev101

    webdev101 Newbie

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    r u sure its not a troll? XD
     
  14. jascoken

    jascoken Senior Member

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    It seems highly unlikely to me that they'd actually follow through where the name isn't actually in the domain or sub-domain, and there are no conflicts with on-page content.

    They can't claim that the word Walmart mentioned as a page name is any kind of trademark infringement. That's just free press; you're allowed to discuss companies etc as long as you're not being malicious or trying to pass yourself off as them.

    do you have copy or offers which might annoy them? Is the offer authorised by them?

    i would contact Walmart with the email and ask for clarification. If its purely the mention of their name in a page title and therefore URL (assuming a standard WordPress setup) then they haven't got a leg to stand on really, as that means every news article ever published on them is infringing their copyright; which is utter crap.

    I've generally found that a well thought out letter and response sends them away. I've had many and my reply letter has killed every single one of them. Most are just trawling and auto-issued by lawyers & reputation management companies.
     
  15. slybear

    slybear Junior Member

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    Interesting that you think it is probably not WalMart.

     
  16. imyself

    imyself Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Mail them regarding your doubts. Put your points in that mail. That will clear doubts for both side.
     
  17. smallwebkings

    smallwebkings BANNED BANNED

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    Thanks you so much guys for the advise :)
     
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  18. zoomsixx

    zoomsixx Senior Member Premium Member

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    Just ignore them I say. I get these emails all the time and I basically tell companies to go F themselves. If you want to send ma a proper cease and desist mail it to me. Then of course they need to figure out who and where I am which is virtually impossible.