Metallica Corporate Egos Gone Mad?
The following article was originally published in the April 30 edition of the San Francisco Bay Guardian:
"We all know Metallica take copyright violations as seriously as they do their love of Raider Nation, but Napster's archenemies are going to have to start picking and choosing their court battles more carefully or risk turning everyone against them. Metallica's latest brush with the world of cease and desist is actually pretty hair-brained. It seems June 10 is the launch date for their longtime-coming eighth studio album, 'St. Anger' (Elektra). So the boys, allegedly, thought a fine way to hype the disc and generate free radio publicity in the weeks leading to the hallowed day would be for rock stations to decree the month of May 'Maytallica.'
"But having the privilege to use such a high-larious audience grabber doesn't come without its restrictions. The San Leandro boys don't want their brilliant idea abused. And who can blame them, as Rocktober turns into AC/December and Van Halen Three-peats morphs into, um, Van Halen Four-peats.....
"So being the savvy music-biz guys they are, the metal men have been busily sending radio programming directors trademark license agreements signed by 'General Partner' Lars Ulrich, a.k.a. the drummer, a.k.a. Master of the Puppets. The finely detailed contracts define radio stations' 'right' to use the band's name and the trademarked promo phrase 'Maytallica' on the airwaves: '(Insert name here) shall not use Maytallica for any purposes other than for radio programming services relating to Metallica and to promote such services and agrees not to seek registration of Maytallica....'
"Hokay, so the question is who's going to profit from swiping the name 'Maytallica'? And wouldn't it be in the band's best interest for 'Maytallica' to be on everyone's lips? Some metal maniacs are apparently off-the-hook control freaks, prompting one program director who signed up for the promotion to whip up his own irate version of the contract titled 'Guarantee of not sucking ass' addressed to 'Corporate Rock Egos Gone Completely Fucking Mad (herein known as 'Metallica').' "
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