Hey, there! Log in / Register

Who would sue Dairy Queen? Who but W.B. Mason

Who would confuse W.B. Mason's Blizzard brands of spring water and copier paper with Dairy Queen's Blizzard brand ice-cream? Who but a moron, W.B. Mason argues in a suit filed against Dairy Queen this week.

W.B. Mason's suit, filed in US District Court in Boston, is an attempt to block the trademark suit Dairy Queen filed in Minnesota earlier in the week, and asks a judge to declare there is no way anybody would ever confuse its bottled water or copier paper with Dairy Queen's blended soft-serve ice cream in a cup.

Dairy Queen's suit specifically mentions only W.B. Mason's bottled water, and only seeks damages related to the sale of the water, which it charges could confuse people into thinking Dairy Queen has something to do with the liquid, which, like its ice cream, is a consumable product. But W.B. Mason's suit thunders that Dairy Queen is trying to stamp out its Blizzard-brand copy paper as well - despite the fact that Dairy Queen does not even mention that product in its suit:

While W.B. Mason first began using the BLIZZARD mark in connection with paper products in 2003 and spring water in 2010, W.B. Mason is not aware of a single person who has ever been confused by its use of BLIZZARD. Indeed, no reasonable person would ever mistakenly believe that copy paper or spring water sold by W.B. Mason and emblazoned with
the W.B. MASON mark and logo emanates from, or is associated with, [American Dairy Queen]. Similarly, W.B. Mason’s use of BLIZZARD on copy paper or spring water that is sold and marketed under the W.B. MASON mark and logo has caused, and will cause, no dilution of ADQ’s BLIZZARD

W.B. Mason also charges that Dairy Queen did a bit of conniving - the two sides had been negotiating a possible settlement when all of a sudden, Dairy Queen up and filed a lawsuit, the company alleges - and besides, a lot of companies use "Blizzard" in product names.

Dairy Queen, based in Minnesota, filed suit there in part because W.B. Mason has at least one store in that state and because Minnesota residents can buy things through the W.B. Mason Web site. W.B. Mason, based in Brockton, filed suit here in part because there are a number of Dairy Queens in Massachusetts.

Free tagging: 
PDF icon Dairy Queen's complaint685.98 KB
PDF icon W. B. Mason's complaint434.76 KB

Like the job UHub is doing? Consider a contribution. Thanks!


...the National Weather Service will now rename winter storms that rhyme with 'lizard' to 'bombastic wind and snow thingies'.

'Hurricanes', since the lawsuit from the "Hurry Cane" company, will be called 'really fast wind thingies with a bit of rain'.

Voting closed 8

Voting closed 4

"Natural Ice"

Voting closed 9

          ( so-called "marketing" people! )

Voting closed 5

They'll be the first against the wall when the revolution comes.

Voting closed 1

So according to the complaints, WB Mason has used the 'blizzard' branding since 2003.

Dairy Queen started using the 'blizzard' in 1987 (as 'registered', first use 1984 in its current incarnation as a 'Flavor blender machine for frozen treats.',). Even if you count the latest iteration of the DQ Blizzard, it still could predate WB Mason.

It seems like DQ would win because they've been using it far longer than WB Mason and its an established brand by the time WB Mason started to use it as a in house brand in 2003.

But then again I'm not a lawyer, I just play one on the internet :-)


DQ Complaint: p. 5,
WB Complaint, p. 4

Voting closed 0

Not only did they use the name for their product first, but the product is, obviously to most of us, completely different.

I used to like using WB mason because they were a local company that delivered quickly. Now, I'm inclined to to use their competitors.

From now on, the WB stands for Wanton Buttholes.

Voting closed 6

Did you miss the part where Dairy Queen sued them first? It left me wondering why anyone would want their product confused with a third-rate ice cream chain. They wouldn't, of course.

The WB Mason suit IS a countersuit. Be careful, or you might lose the first half of your name.

Voting closed 10

Thanks for pointing it out.

And thanks for caring, but I much more cherish the second part of my name, thank you very much.

Voting closed 2

You also have to prove there's some likelihood of confusion, in part because the products are in the same basic niche. So one of the judges could rule that, yeah, bottled water is close enough to what Dairy Queen offers that it's a trademark violation. Dairy Queen tries to buttress its case of potential confusion by noting that W.B. Mason also sells ICEE brand frozen squeeze candy and bulk boxes of ice-cream cones. Dairy Queen might have a tougher battle with copier paper, but, oh, and I'm no lawyer, either, that might be why their complaint doesn't even mention it.

Voting closed 6

Is more of an art than a science.

My non-lawyer take is that W.B. Mason wouldn’t be able to register their trademark, but DQ might not be able to enjoin them from using blizzard for their water. The best outcome will be a settlement.

Voting closed 11

Voting closed 3

because "Instant Brain Freeze" wouldn't have attracted as many customers.

Voting closed 7

and ozzy used it before either of them, so can we all just share this common english word?

Voting closed 1

I was at DQ the other day. I ordered an Oreo Blizzard. I was expecting a bottle of water and an Oreo cookie. Instead, I got an ice cream concoction. I was very confused.

Voting closed 2