News, Saturday, February 10, 2001, p. A2
Degrassi fan threatened with suit over use of name
Torstar News Service
Kitchener – A local university student says he has been threatened with a lawsuit if he doesn’t relinquish Internet domain names for his Web sites about the Degrassi TV series.
Mark Polger, a huge fan of the Canadian youth series, which ran from 1979 to 1992, says he is incensed by the request.
“They’re bullying me like Dwayne bullied Joey,” said Polger, referring to an ongoing rift between two teenaged characters on the show.
“In a very abstract kind of way,” he said.
A year ago, Polger says, he began receiving e-mails and phone calls from Epitome Pictures requesting he hand over his Internet domain names – degrassi.ca, degrassi.org and degrassiweb.com.
In June, he says, he was called to a meeting in Toronto, where plans were revealed for a new Degrassi series and he was urged to give up the domain names associated with the unofficial Web site he’s been running since 1998.
Polger refused, and on Jan. 12, he says he was served with a statement of claim seeking damages for, among other things, trademark infringement, “deliberately attempting to improperly take advantage and trade on the (series) valuable reputation” and “using the domain names in bad faith.”
Epitome president Linda Schuyler said Polger was never served with a statement of claim. It was simply a draft, “showing what it would look like” if Polger refused to change his mind.
Length: Short, 188 words
2001 Guelph Mercury. All rights reserved.
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