Part of the American culture is the drive to achieve. This goes for individuals, bands and, of course, corporations. The massive corporations that can pay for those commercials you see all day long, and whose names you already know, can allegedly be pretty cutthroat when it comes to maximizing their own lasting power and bottom line. It’s not unheard of for a big corporation to engage in anti-competitive behavior. and some examples of common schemes in which they will engage include price signaling, predatory pricing and creating anti-competitive agreements. Right now, the band OK Go is getting the kind of corporate treatment from Post Consumer Foods you won’t see in its commercials.
We have been sued by Post Foods. Have you ever had your name stolen by a multi-billion-dollar food processing Goliath? pic.twitter.com/IpTkai1ubD
— OK Go (@okgo) January 31, 2023
How and Why Is Post Bullying OK Go?
Post has decided to call its new product OK GO!, which seems like a naked commandeering of another business entity’s likeness. Before you develop a negative opinion of Post, three things should be said: first, it could be a coincidence – as opposed to blatant theft – that has moved Post to call their new product OK GO! Second, even if they did knowingly appropriate a well-known name that has a huge fanbase and proven lasting power, it’s not personal. They just don’t care that they’re effectively conflating the band with cereal and that the band most vigorously does not want this to happen. Compassion and empathy don’t put money in the corporate coffers and corporations hire people who share this attitude. This is the sad fact of the corporate world.
Lest you think that Post looks pretty vile in this scenario, there is another element here. When Kellogg’s – another well-known cereal behemoth – stepped in the way of rap legend and incredible human being Snoop Dogg’s cereal, which was named Snoop Loops, Post actually came to the rescue. It allowed Snoop (and his partner, the sublime Master P) to put out their cereal, which had the added benefit of helping with their community. That Snoop’s brand has a big heart is something that Kellogg’s didn’t care about, because it would’ve eaten into its own profits.
In the Snoop affair, Post swooped in with its vast resources and offered help. Under its banner, Snoop and Master P were allowed to enter the marketplace. One could make the reasonable argument that they only did so because they thought that these big names in music would yield the corporation big net gains. Now they are showing the other side of the coin, where, rather than help a band who’s in need, they seem to be willing to ignore it, while they blatantly steal from it. This ain’t nothing but a G thing, but in this case, the G stands for greed.
— FRaNK (@timber_jordan) February 1, 2023
How Should OK Go Proceed?
Corporations are sometimes willing to engage in dubious conduct to achieve their financial goals. To achieve these sorts of goals, these companies’ conduct embodies the words of the infamous Gordon Gekko, who famously stated that greed is good. OK Go is just the latest entity that the corporate steamroller has turned its attention to. The band should fight because it has the legal rights to the name that it has gone by for decades. For Post to swoop in and try to profit off of somebody else’s name leaves an awfully stale taste.