Joe Muscara Posted December 17, 2018 Share Posted December 17, 2018 Steinway & Sons Threatens Legal Action Against Owners of its Pianos Here is the letter from Steinway Acting General Counsel Todd Brecher: December 11, 2018 To whom it may concern, As you may have heard, Steinway & Sons no longer licenses the use of its trademarks or logos (either past or present iterations thereof) to Decals Unlimited for the creation of decals for use on the soundboards and fallboards of Steinway pianos. There were many reasons for this decision, most notably the fact that these decals were being used on restored/rebuilt Steinway pianos that were being rebuilt without genuine Steinway soundboards or wrestplanks/pinblocks, and sometimes without a single genuine Steinway replacement part. We have found that there is an enormous amount of misinformation on the differences between a genuine Steinway piano and an old Steinway rebuilt with non-Steinway parts on the web, in piano forums, and other places. This misinformation is often propagated by the very same rebuilders that are marketing and selling off the good name that Steinway has established for quality over the course of 165 years of building pianos. We cannot allow our company name (and reputation) to exist on a piano that looks brand new, but in many cases sounds nothing like a Steinway. Effective immediately, it is no longer legally permissible to purchase Steinway decals for application on a Steinway piano through Decals Unlimited. In addition, Steinway has not authorized any other party to sell Steinway decals, and any such decals are considered counterfeit. Steinway will not be selling decals through our Parts Department or any other Steinway channel. Furthermore, it is a violation of our trademark rights for someone to market or sell a restored/rebuilt piano as a Steinway piano unless: (A) the piano uses ONLY genuine Steinway replacement parts or (B) the non-Steinway replacement parts used are incidental to the function of the piano and any such non-Steinway parts used are specifically disclosed to the consumer. In either case, it must also be specifically and fully disclosed to the consumer that the piano has been rebuilt and by whom. Steinway & Sons takes its reputation and this matter very seriously, and will enforce our rights with respect to any pianos marketed or sold in violation of the above to the fullest extent of the law. We are asking anyone who comes across a piano that they feel may be using counterfeit Steinway & Sons decals, or which is being marketed and sold as a Steinway piano in violation of our trademark rights to report the violation, including the piano and its location, by sending a message to firstname.lastname@example.org. We have come across far too many purchasers of rebuilt Steinways that do not realize that the key components of that piano were not manufactured by Steinway & Sons, so we are taking these steps to better inform and protect the consumer. Thank you for your attention in this matter of great importance to our company. Sincerely, Todd Brecher Acting General Counsel Steinway Musical Instruments, Inc. Imagine you owned a 1968 Chevrolet Camaro (I did once). Chevrolet says, "you can't call it a Chevrolet, Chevy, or anything else because you used non-Chevrolet parts. You can't even get emblems for it if you rebuild or repaint the body because we've stopped that, too." And they're asking that anyone that comes across a car like this being marketed and sold as a "Chevy" or "Chevrolet" to report it to them. Quote "I'm so crazy, I don't know this is impossible! Hoo hoo!" - Daffy Duck "The good news is that once you start piano you never have to worry about getting laid again. More time to practice!" - MOI Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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