Reader Email – Did Vaughn Hockey Steal This UNH Bro’s Hockey Pad Design? The Answer is Yes.
My friend created these goalie pads that look like the net (to make it harder to shoot on) when he was 17, got them copyrighted etc. This Vaughn Hockey company stole his idea and have been selling them including to NHL players. He made this website: http://dearvaughn.weebly.com/ in order to try and get their attention. Figured you and the rest of the Stool could help him out by spreading the word and hopefully he doesn’t keep getting ripped off.
My name is Trevor Leahy. You may not recognize my name, but you are certainly familiar with my work, because you ripped it off.
A few years ago, at the age of 17, I designed a revolutionary set of goalie pads that look like the net. You can pretend that you never saw them, but that would mean that you don’t read Sports Illustrated, The New York Times, The Boston Globe, The Toronto Star or watch Discovery Channel, Hockey Night in Canada, ESPN, The NHL Network, NESN, or Keith Olberman’s countdown of the three best persons in America. (I was number three.) Perhaps you don’t have internet access over there at Vaughn World HQ, so there was no way to see the thousands of comments about my pads on blogs like The Hockey News, The Goalie Guild, or my personal favorite, Mother Pucker.
So you can pretend you didn’t rip me off. My lawyer says that’s what you’ll do. But we both know that while I was designing pads to look like the goal, you were selling a line of gear that looked like it walked into a bad tattoo parlor on Saturday night at 1 AM after drinking a dozen Natty Lights.
And now, suddenly, your pads look exactly like the ones I’ve been selling for four years.
We can get into an ugly legal mess, that I’ll eventually probably lose because you have big lawyers on payroll and I am just a college kid with impending student loans and little dough for lawyers.
So instead, I have a simple solution. Hire me.
I’ll be graduating from the University of New Hampshire in the spring with a business degree.
Last semester I had a 3.91 GPA. I’m very creative. And you already clearly are impressed with my work. I have many ideas that I could give to you and you wouldn’t have to rip them off.
Hire me. I’d be a great employee. I’m hard working and passionate about hockey.
The only thing I won’t do is rip off the work of others. That sort of plagiarism brings on all kinds of bad karma and angry letters.
Creator of Goalieflage ®
(The name is trademarked, so you can’t steal it!)
Okay I’m kind of confused on this one. I guess let me start by stating the obvious here. This kid clearly invented this design and Vaughn saw it, liked it and stole it. But can you trademark/patent goalie pad designs? I don’t think so. Maybe you can? I really have no idea. My guess is he trademarked the name but not the design. Regardless I think this kid’s solution is totally fair. Vaughn should hire him. Done and done. Everybody is happy. What do people think? Should this kid sue or did he just get his first real life lesson that they don’t teach in college about everybody being a winner and life being all fair and shit.