Business, Economics and Jobs

French retailer trademarks Anonymous brand


A woman walks past a graffiti made by the shadowy online hackers group Anonymous at the entrance of the French anti-piracy watchdog Hadopi headquarters on January 30, 2012 in Paris.


Patrick Kovarik

French e-commerce company Early Flicker has provoked the wrath of Anonymous.

Last February it filed to trademark the collective’s logo and its mantra, “we do not forgive….”

Early Flicker, specializing in t-shirt designs, may have been looking to capitalize on the popularity of Anonymous by printing shirts emblazoned with the collective’s logo. The Anonymous mantra and logo have been classified as a registered trademark in France’s National Institute of Industrial Property.

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Famously opposed to intellectual property and copyright law, Anonymous has pledged to shut down Early Flicker’s business. 

“Anonymous will take down any business they have going on the internet and the ninety nine percent will not stop until the registration has been revoked and a public apology has been made,” said an Anonymous spokesperson in a YouTube press release. 

Anonymous has made plans to dox — internet speak for making public personal information — Apollinaire Affret, Early Flicker’s manager. Some personal information belonging to Affret has already been released in an Anonymous Internet Relay Chat (IRC). Plans to launch distributed denial of service attacks against Early Flicker and its associates have also been discussed in an IRC.

Early Flicker's website has yet to come under fire.

On Twitter and elsewhere, Anonymous supporters have decried the use of the collective’s brand for commercial purposes. Indeed, profiting from Anonymous merchandising is antithetical to the collective’s populist and often anti-capitalist ideals. 

Elsewhere on the internet, Che Guevara t-shirts, snap backs, hoodies and bobbleheads are for sale at their lowest prices ever.

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