Wild Snow Trademark!

Post by WildSnow.com blogger | December 9, 2008      

This might be a bit too corporate for some of you free spirits out there, but it had to be done. Otherwise, as I build the reputation of this website someone could do nefarious things with our hard worked term “Wild Snow.” Thus, we’re now announcing our trademark of “Wild Snow” !!! Good to get this done, now I can move on to the next backoffice project… But wait, perhaps I can get in a ski day now?

Wild Snow trademark

Wild Snow trademark


Please Enjoy A Few Suggested WildSnow Posts


20 Responses to “Wild Snow Trademark!”

  1. Sam Reese December 9th, 2008 6:05 pm

    Congratulations! It’s a good call in protecting your name in the future, I’ve had friends with band names have to change their name, even though they had been using it for years, because someone else pushed the paper first.

    On a unrelated note, I’ve got a Dynafit Binding question that I couldn’t find a good post to attach it to:

    I paid (red flag 1) REI (red flag 2) to mount my Vertical ST’s because i was afraid and lazy (redflags …). Now that I’ve gotten them back, I was playing with them on the carpet in my house, and the heel doesn’t quite line up. I tried switching the boots, and the boots are apparently symmetrical, the mount jobs aren’t.

    So one ski, when i drop the toe in, the heel lines up somewhat well, one peg going quite close to the slot, the somewhat on the boot rubber, and that one slots with only downward force. The other ski, when I drop the toe in, the heel rubber rests on the prongs, around 3mm offset from the slots in the boot. I can easily slot the boot with a wiggle and downward force, but there is slop in the binding, and an audiable click when I wiggle it.

    Is this acceptable, or will it be annoying and/or compromise the binding release? Also, is this acceptable from having paid someone to put my bindings on?

  2. Lou December 9th, 2008 7:20 pm

    Bogus, take ’em back. I’m sooooo tired of these manky commercial mount jobs done by so called pros…. They should fly me up there for a clinic .

  3. Colin December 9th, 2008 7:35 pm

    Congrats Lou! That’s great. Good that you’re protecting yourself.

    Sam, if it’s a ski that REI carries, make them write one out of inventory for you and remount those bindings. If they’re hesitant to do that, and you don’t care, offer to give them your mis-mounted skis in exchange (so you don’t get a windfall, but you get your expectation of having mounted skiable skis). Speak to a manager, the store manager if need be. It’s easier if they carry it. If not, it’s going to be a bit harder but they still need to take care of you. If the tech wasn’t capable of a proper Dynafit mount (and it seems in this case that they had a jig or a paper jig but just measured wrong?), then they shouldn’t have offered to mount them for you. (I was a three year REI sales-kid in undergrad, for reference.)

  4. Lou December 9th, 2008 7:46 pm

    Thanks for the words Colin, it’s indeed a big step!

    As for the bogo-mount, a pro might be able to shift the binding alignment per standard techniques of mount-fu, but if the heel is off then it’s a bigger and more bogus problem. Usually it’s the toe that’s skewed (and causes the boot heel to be off center), so hope for that. Heel mount is checked by making center marks on ski and seeing if heel lines up with them, per ye olde WildSnow mount instructions:


  5. trademark this December 9th, 2008 9:51 pm

    A trade mark on a generic term like wild snow? I think you are getting a little full of yourself. That term has been in existence long before this site or your book.

  6. Randonnee December 9th, 2008 10:42 pm

    I say congratulations Lou! Wildsnow is the real source for randonnee skiing culture and technical information. Other websites about backcountry skiing are of little interest after a short read. Wildsnow is interesting, relevant and informative.

    Best, Rob

  7. Randonnee December 9th, 2008 10:45 pm

    In regard to the poor mount, in my view with the mounting error the terms of the agreement are not satisfied. It is a Contractual relationship, the consumer pays money, the retailer delivers as agreed, end of story. Stick with it, get a new ski and proper mount. I infamously called the Sheriff to report a shop’s refusal to refund a wrong mount on my wife’s new skis. In my view, the shop’s refusal to make it right was simply unlawful and I would have pursued it to the fullest possible lawful extent. The situation did resolve after the owner told my wife to never again come in his shop. Looking forward to that shop changing hands again…

  8. Lou December 10th, 2008 6:43 am

    “Trademark this,” study your trademark law then comment. It has to do with specific use of the mark, not how “generic” it is. In other words, it’s still generic in most ways — unless someone trademarks it for use as a car name, for example. Trademark simply protects text or an image a person is using to do commerce. Nothing more evil and heinous than that. Sorry you took it the wrong way.

    Interesting to get slammed for just trying to do my website in a professional way. But like I said, the concept of a trademark is probably too much for some folks. I mean, that’s like, GM or something!

    Seriously, another thing I learned when getting up to speed on this is that if you’re using any word or image as a name for a business endeavor, it’s actually trademarked by default and if someone uses that same name you can make a claim that you own the trademark if you’ve been using the term longer than they have — this even if the “trademark” is not registered. The reason why you register the mark, as I did with Wild Snow, is to make it easier to defend yourself if someone uses a similar name for a similar business.

    When you think about it, all this really does in the end is keep things sorted out so we don’t end up with a bunch of businesses operating under the same or similar names. Good for the consumer, in other words.

    All interesting, to me anyway, as one who’s been self employed most of my working life and had to fend for myself.

  9. Rando Swede December 10th, 2008 8:16 am

    Way to go Lou. Wild Snow. TM, (R), Inc…. dot com. Actually, did you TM WildSnow.com too or is that included? How does that work?

    For Sam’s mismount, I agree that they should take care of him. However, I big outfit like REI may very well have some fine print on a work ticket he may have signed that says something like “we mount at your own risk.” I have seen this sort of thing. Either way, a shop should make good on it.

    Back in my retail days, we had an awesome ski tech. Well, one day he mounts some bindings on a new pair of skis that we did not carry (the customer did purchase the bindings from us). Aynway, this new ski was quite a bit thinner near the heel piece. Well, one screw pierced the base… DOH! The tech was pretty distraught by the whole deal but I had him fix the base as best as he could. Then, I called the customer and had him come down to the shop. He was way bummed and rightfully so. I offered to replace the skis (paying full pop from a competitor but the competitor was out of stock!) So… I remembered that the customer had been trying on new boots at my shop. I did the math… At this time a boot cost me about $250… I just gave him the boots. He was totally blown away and happily walked out of the store with a brand new pair of boots and a high end base repair that you couldn’t even notice. Moral of the story is that he didn’t trash our store all around town or on some BLOG (priceless), and he came in and bought stuff from us all of the time.

    Keep us posted Sam

  10. Lou December 10th, 2008 8:42 am

    Rando, every craftsman makes mistakes now and then, it’s indeed how they’re dealt with that’s the key. I screw up quite regularly here in my workshop, as a matter of fact. Tecate is my usual solution — or perhaps the cause?

    I’m sensitive to the issue of folks bashing retailers on web forums and blogs, and we tend to discourage that here. But in the case of binding mounting I’ve seen much work that was obviously just plain sloppy or the result of ignorance, so I’ve been taking the approach that full disclosure is in order. This along with my opinion that retailers need to provide exceptional service — or fade. That said, I’d encourage anyone who posts about a bad mount to follow up with how the resolution went. This is only fair.

    Retailers, you can speak up as well. As Swede did, let us know how you deal with this sort of thing.

    Consumers, you might want to ask the ski tech just how many Dynafits they’ve actually mounted, and if they use them themselves…

  11. Mike Davis December 10th, 2008 8:48 am

    Congrats Lou. I have always enjoyed reading your site and think that it is the best of its kind that I have found.

  12. Lou December 10th, 2008 8:51 am

    Rando, regarding how the trademark works in terms of .com, trademarking the words/word without the .com is ok as far as I know, as in coca-cola.com, but one could buy a trademark for the .com version if they wanted and I’d imagine coca-cola owns both. The more the better, probably, so long as you had the money and time. In my case, I wanted to start with the most generic first, but figured I’d perhaps register a few variations as things progress. I’ve also had various trade names registered for some time here in Colorado. All just normal business stuff I thought you wildsnowers might be interested in.

  13. Gary Quiring December 10th, 2008 10:01 am

    Did you get your own tradmark or get a lawyer…..
    I was told you could not do it yorself, but lo and behold I pulled it off after about 8 months….in Canada that is.
    Way to go…….and thanks for your blog/site…..

  14. Lou December 10th, 2008 10:05 am

    Gary, I used Quicken’s business services. It cost quite a bit less than using a lawyer, but required some guesswork a lawyer would have (I think) eliminated — or possibly just billed me to research.

  15. Randonnee December 10th, 2008 10:31 am

    Interesting discussion about customer service. As Lou says, every craftsman makes mistakes. The issue is the manner that the error is remedied. Some folks that I do business with for various things are genuine and respectful, and there is give and take between us. If I feel somehow on the short end, the next time that retailer gives my way, then I happily keep spending and recommending that business. As with most things associated with skiing, reason and reality sometimes are lost in ski gear transactions. Perhaps arrogance enters in at times resulting in less service and consideration of the customer. At other times, with full retail transactions I get great service and respect, and try to return that respect. It boils down to an exchange of money for product and service. This is best done in an atmosphere of genuine mutual respect.

  16. Lee Lau December 10th, 2008 6:15 pm

    trademark this … you don’t know what you’re talking about. Your comment’s woeful ignorance keeps intellectual property lawyers gainfully employed.

    Lou – congrats!

    Don’t bother with variations of Wild Snow for now. Protecting the core mark is all you need. in your business You can apply for variations later when the millions keep rolling in.

  17. Sam Reese December 10th, 2008 8:53 pm

    So update on the bad binding mount: It was indeed the toepeice that was misaligned, and the head ski tech took care of it really quickly… Well, Hourishly quickly. Anyway, they were really great about fixing it, and all is well now.

    Too bad it wasn’t the heelpeice, though, I was hoping to get new skis.

  18. Lou December 10th, 2008 9:11 pm

    Sam, thanks for checking back in, I hate to leave it hanging when we name names. Did the tech re-glue the toe screws when he loosened them and re-tightened?

  19. for the record December 12th, 2008 3:51 pm

    You are not corporate, you will not be corporate until you:

    1. Try to squeeze old people for more dollars
    2. Fire 50 the day before Birds of Prey and pray the news cycle drowns our your stock dropping from 62 to 21
    3. Kneecap the state’s nonprofit marketing organization, force them to cut their budget so they are crippled, then quit anyway because the real plan was to eliminate all the other state’s areas ability to compete with you.

    You are so far from corporate you are not allowed to use that word anymore, because I trademarked it, so you owe me a buck.

    Great blog, I’m going to link to this and send you nearly a dozen readers a year.


  20. Lou December 12th, 2008 4:02 pm


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