Don’t Tread on Their Trademark
Hell hath no fury like…a Hell’s Angel who feels his intellectual property rights have been infringed. That’s what Morrow found out recently when it made up 5,000 bandannas to promote Hell’s Angel, Ralph ”Sonny” Barger’s memoir of his life with the motorcycle club. The bandannas, which read ”Sonny Barger is Hell’s Angel,” were intended only as promotional favors within the book trade. But that wasn’t good enough for the celebrated club. ”As Sonny said to me, ‘We’re Hell’s Angels. We beat people up for wearing that patch,”’ said Fritz Clapp, corporation counsel for the club. When Morrow told Clapp that the bandannas had already been given out, he said, ”Well, you better get them back.” And they did. The bandannas will now be distributed to the bikers. Said Morrow’s Kristen Green, ”It works out as a nice thank-you to the members,” some of whom will ride with Barger on his book tour.
It’s not just Mickey Mouse: Hyperion, Disney’s publishing arm, has established a high-end literary imprint, Theia…. Jimmy Carter has sold a memoir of his Plains, Ga., childhood to legendary Simon & Schuster editor Alice Mayhew for a reported $1.6 million…. St. Martin’s top seller right now? A line of coin-collecting albums for the new U.S. Mint Statehood quarters. The company, which had an initial pressrun of 50,000 last fall, now has 4 million in print. ”Pokemon has been replaced by kids trading quarters on the playgrounds of America,” says St. Martin’s Lisa Senz.