Publishers take note – Don’t Mess With Texas

Every so often on this blog I like to post a funny or satirize story. Today the state of Texas decided to save me the effort.

The Texas Department of Transportation is suing over the titles of a romance novel. The suit names Hachette , Barnes & Noble, and the author of said book, Christie Craig. Their offense? The title of the romance novel is Don't Mess With Texas, and apparently the TxDOT hold the trademark for that term.

It sounds like the TxDOT use that catchphrase to sell clothing and other stuff, and they don't want their valuable trademark sullied by a trashy romance novel.

I swear I'm not making this up.

I don't know about you, but I'm a little concerned.  Do you think with affect my  upcoming romance novel The Big Easy?I'm not sure New Orleans will be pleased.


About Nate Hoffelder (11481 Articles)
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader: "I've been into reading ebooks since forever, but I only got my first ereader in July 2007. Everything quickly spiraled out of control from there. Before I started this blog in January 2010 I covered ebooks, ebook readers, and digital publishing for about 2 years as a part of MobileRead Forums. It's a great community, and being a member is a joy. But I thought I could make something out of how I covered the news for MobileRead, so I started this blog."

8 Comments on Publishers take note – Don’t Mess With Texas

  1. I didn’t think you could sue over book titles..

  2. Don’t Mess With Texas has been in use for 25 years to promote keeping our state clean – in ad campaigns on television, radio, and in print. It’s not so much for selling T-shirts as it is for putting on things like car trash bags, hitching citizen pride to citizen responsibility. I think that’s a good thing, don’t you?

    The program’s on the net, too, and if you google, this is what you’ll find: .

    • I’ll take your word for it.

      But I would also argue that the trademark has been diluted already. I didn’t know it as anything other than a cute catchphrase, and I doubt that anyone outside of Texas does either.

      • They used to put up “Don’t Mess with Texas” signs all over as part of the anti-littering campaign. But people driving through the state didn’t know about the campaign and just figured it was something people said. And most Texans just liked the ring of it.

        So now, the TDOT has sent over 20 cease-and-desist letters to different companies about it, trying to reclaim the original meaning.

        Might have worked if they’d done it 10 years ago.

    • Now that’s just silly!
      “Texas” is probably just the protagonist’s name.

  3. This will allow Governor Perry to boast that he has created some more new jobs — for more lawyers — so clearly he and Michelle Bachmann are the people to elect in 2012: The Texan who creates jobs.

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