Tag Archives: Red Bull

legal schmeegle…

Are you kidding me? The brain trust at Red Bull have sic’d their legal beagles on a fan.

http://www.red-bullog.com/2009/03/28/the-end/

That’s right. Someone took the time to set up a blog a few months ago to celebrate, promote and support their favorite Formula 1 team and along with it the sponsor, and got rewarded with a cease and desist letter, on the eve of the first race of the 2009 season, thus sucking the joy of the sport right out of the lad, and his readership.

Their reasoning? “Potentially, this could confuse members of the public”
Yes, the quiet beige and blue wordpress blog titled: “the red bullog: An unofficial blog on Red Bull Racing” could easily be misconstrued as the official website of the multi-mega bazillion dollar company.

The only thing that truly confuses me is how cushy things must be at the office that THIS is what their legal team is getting paid to waste time on.

I have to wonder when the suits at these various companies, series, teams, etc… are going to remove their craniums from their rectums long enough to realize that ultimately it’s the FANS that are their bread and butter? Especially right now.

Alienate the fans, you lose. Period. You’ll have a bunch of shiny cars, covered in shiny sponsor stickers, driving around in front of lots of shiny aluminum.

This chap, in addition to falling silent now, will likely rethink his future purchases of A) Red Bull B) Red Bull team swag of any sort C) race tickets D) many other loosely related objects & events related to Red Bull or F1.

In addition to that, his friends, who he likely would have prodded and begged to get on board to support all of the above, will now most likely no longer do so, taking their support and their money elsewhere. Perhaps to another team, energy drink, hell maybe another sport all together.

On top of that the word of mouth, now negative instead of positive, will grow and travel like a virus. (it’s already happening) I didn’t know about this fella or his blog this morning. But I do now. For all the wrong reasons.
Do I see him as the bad guy? Nope.
He’s just another one of us here in the trenches supporting the sport he loves.
Do I feel a little differently about Red Bull than I did this morning? Hell ya.

In this economy, when everyone is tightening their belts, and cutting back on perceived “frivolous” purchases, isn’t it in a companies best interest to sit back and enjoy the free publicity and the grassroots ground swell of support from fans of their products or the programs their products support and thus reap the benefit of?

There are no ad banners on his site. No sales of swag with illegal usage of logos. No monitizing of any sort.

Just a fan, taking time out of his schedule to promote the series/team/drivers to other current and potential fans.

Perhaps they need to take a page out of the VERSUS playbook. Not only do they not mind if we mention or promote their station and it’s wares, but they are actually reaching out to the fans, in particular those of us with blogs and encouraging us to spread the word, providing us with banners to display and link to them, as well as swag to give away. They understand the value of not only the entire social media/word of mouth phenomenon, but also the value of a happy, supportive fan base. Hell, I can’t even GET VERSUS here in Canada, but I’m so thrilled that they are providing my fellow racing enthusiasts with a well thought out product offering, that I am gladly participating in spreading the word.

Dan, I don’t know you buddy, but I think it’s pretty sucky that you’ve been treated the way you have. If you ever want a place to scream and shout, contact me. I’ll give you a “guest spot” here in Shwitville! LOL

ouch…

that’s gonna leave a mark…

“We’re at a crossroads where we need to make a change that will elevate the No. 84 team to success,” said VP and General Manager Jay Frye. “AJ’s our guy and he’s a talented driver, but there’s a lot being asked of him. In order for him to be successful, we have to get this team pointed in the right direction. We hope we can do that with the help of a veteran driver.”

Unlike some other classless “fan” folks, I’m not going to dance or cheer for a driver being out of work. Considering the plight of several of our open wheel drivers at the moment, it certainly would be pushing the karmic boundries.

Do I like what AJ did a couple of years ago? No.
Truthfully, I didn’t much like the kid when he was a Champ Car driver. His ego and attitude far outshone his talent.
Do I think he got some bad advice from people looking out for their own best interests instead of his own? Yes.
Do I think he simply ran out of talent? Yes and No.
The ridiculously convoluted “owner’s points” qualifying is probably to blame for 80% of his lack of success. (a conversation for another time) Of course once you do get into the show, you’ve got to be able to drive the wheels off the car and bring it across the finish line in one piece and in a good place. He had the same problem in open wheel too. They don’t call him “wallmandinger” for nothing…

All that said, had he stuck it out with Champ Car and signed on the bottom line with GF, he would be sitting on the sidelines beside PT with an iron clad contract and nothing to drive now anyway.

I sincerely hope for AJ’s sake that this truly is a temporary situation, that he gets the training and guidance needed and that he can get back in the show and prove the naysayers wrong. Although this is Red Bull we are talking about… Their treatment of their drivers in all genres of racing is questionable at best.