The original Woodstock was a three-day music festival filled with drugs, sex and mayhem that defined a generation known for its deep distrust of authority. But 50 years later, the owners of the festival name are getting an assist from a federal judge.
Power to the people, indeed.
On Monday, U.S. District Judge Paul Gardephe said that Woodstock Ventures, which produced the 1969 festival, could indeed license its name to create a marijuana brand commemorating the concert’s golden anniversary this summer. In doing so, Gardephe rejected a claim that the cannabis brand would infringe on Woodstock Roots, a company that does business as “Woodstock American Products” and that sells a variety of hemp-related products.
In his ruling, Gardephe said that the commemorative marijuana products brand sought by Woodstock Ventures are “different” than the cannabis-related “smokers articles” offered by Woodstock Roots. Woodstock Ventures products “all involve the use of recreational marijuana, while [Woodstock Roots] have expressly disavowed the notion that their products are intended for use with recreational marijuana,” the judge said in his ruling.
“Accordingly, even if the parties’ products are marketed through the same or similar trade channels, this fact does not suggest a likelihood of confusion, because [Woodstock