The Boston Beer Company, brewer of Samuel Adams Boston Lager, wishes Portland City Commissioner Sam Adams the best of luck in his pursuit of higher office. And guess what – Samuel Adams Beer has in no way ever suggested that Sam Adams the candidate cannot use his own name. But, according to recent stories in the media, it sure hasn’t looked that way.
A little history: last week The Boston Beer Company learned that an individual named Dave Anderson of Portland, Oregon had registered two domain names that featured the name Sam Adams. Not knowing his intent, we sent him a letter asking him not to use these sites. Next thing we knew, we had a call from the legal department at broadcasting conglomerate, Clear Channel, at which point we learned that Dave Anderson is a DJ at Clear Channel’s KEX radio and that a man named Sam Adams was indeed running for Mayor of Portland. We wish we had learned a little more about Portland’s race for mayor before sending out that initial letter, and for that we apologize.
Why did we ask Clear Channel and Dave Anderson not to use those domain names? In the past we have experienced times when individuals and organizations have tried to use our brand name for commercial purposes or to disparage our good name. We have learned that, as a small company, we need to protect our identity. At the least we wanted to prevent a situation where people looking for our Web site end up linked to a radio station promotional site.
On the other hand, there have been occasions over the years when individuals actually named “Sam Adams” have registered domain names that included the words Sam Adams, and we have had no quarrel with that.
Similarly, we believe that Sam Adams, the mayoral candidate, has every bit as much right to use his name as we do. Our namesake, the patriot Samuel Adams, stood for public service and free speech, and we do too. We hope these URLs will, in fact, be transferred to candidate Sam Adams where they rightfully belong.
Candidate Sam Adams – shout your name from the rooftops and your Web site!
Well Beervanians, are you convinced?