or


[08/10/05 - 12:00 AM]
Simon Cowell, ABC Television Network, Freemantlemedia, North America Sued in Federal Court for Stealing 'Million Dollar Idea(R)' Brand

[via press release from Roaring Entertainment]

Simon Cowell, ABC Television Network, Freemantlemedia, North America Sued in Federal Court For Stealing �Million Dollar Idea�� Brand

Federal Lawsuit Charges Defendants with Stealing Trademarked Brand, Copying Entire Premise for New Show, Marketing As Their Own

LOS ANGELES, CA, August 10, 2005 � A lawsuit filed in Federal Court here today states that Simon Cowell, and ABC Television Network (NYSE: DIS), conspired to steal the trademarked brand �Million Dollar Idea�, copy the entire premise of a show already airing in national syndication on over 125 television stations, and market that idea as their own.

The federal case is being brought by original �Million Dollar Idea� creators/hosts Jean Golden and Todd Walker. It is a direct response to ABC�s July 13, 2005 announcement of a new show of the same name, �created� by Cowell and �packaged� by CAA.

�From stem to stern, each and every detail of Simon Cowell and ABC�s mock �Million Dollar Idea� is a patent rip-off of Todd and Jean�s four-year labor of love,� said attorney Pierce O'Donnell. �Cowell, and ABC, conspired to destroy the very essence that the show �Million Dollar Idea� is here to promote � the ability of the little guy with a big dream to take an idea and bring it to fruition.� O�Donnell added that the damages from the lawsuit are estimated to be well into the tens of millions of dollars, in an exact amount to be determined at trial.

In 2001, Golden and Walker � childhood friends who eventually became business partners in their own public relations/marketing firm in Minneapolis, MN � teamed up and spent the next two years developing what became the �Million Dollar Idea�.� By 2002, they pitched and shot a pilot of �Million Dollar Idea� for KSTC TV (the sister station to ABC affiliate KSTP) in Minneapolis/St. Paul. By 2003, the show was airing on KSTC, in the nation�s 14th largest market (Minneapolis, MN).

Three seasons and over 30 episodes later, the show was recently nationally syndicated to over 125 television stations. In the process, it has drawn the attention of national media including The New York Times, Time Magazine, NBC�s The Today Show, Late Show with David Letterman, and Entrepreneur Magazine. Golden and Walker registered for both copyright and trademark for the name and premise of �Million Dollar Idea�.

In early 2004, Walker pitched Andrea Wong, executive vice president for Alternative Programming, Specials and Late Night at ABC Network. Wong was enthused by the idea and Walker/Golden followed up by sending Wong a pitch package which included selected media coverage of Million Dollar Idea, taped episodes of the show, a business plan and treatment for a national show. Also included was a confidentiality agreement. Golden and Walker also provided copies of their pitch materials to CAA, the same agency named in a recent ABC press release as having �packaged� the imitation �Million Dollar Idea�.

In mid-July 2005, ABC and Cowell, with the help of CAA, announced a new show, titled �Million Dollar Idea,� that is an exact replica of the already-airing and trademarked/copyrighted show of the same name. The ABC release quotes both Cowell and Wong, who makes decisions for the network on reality show content.

�At what point does our society say �enough is enough� to the big corporate giants who take advantage of the little guy? Business 101 classes teach that before you create or launch a new product or business, you must research the name and premise of the business to be sure that you are not infringing on trademark, patent or copyright of another individual,� stated attorney Ann Marie Mortimer.

In addition to the direct theft of the show title, each and every major concept relating to the show idea was also stolen.

The lawsuit calls for immediate injunctive relief and unspecified damages.

�It is incredibly ironic that our show, the premise of which is to promote, protect and reward small-town American ingenuity, was itself the victim of corporate theft and greed,� said Jean Golden, co-creator of Million Dollar Idea. �What has happened to us is every inventor/entrepreneur�s worst nightmare: having your idea stolen. The arrogance of Simon Cowell and ABC is beyond comprehension. Can you imagine stealing an idea and not even bothering to change the name of it?�

�We are outraged that Simon Cowell, and ABC Network think that they are above the law,� said Todd Walker. �We were taken aback to see our brand so brazenly stolen by corporate giants.�

Golden and Walker are represented by Pierce O'Donnell and Ann Marie Mortimer of O'Donnell Shaeffer Mortimer, LLP, in Los Angeles.

For more information about Million Dollar Idea, visit www.milliondollaridea.tv.





  [august 2005]  
S
M
T
W
T
F
S
 


· AMERICAN INVENTOR (ABC)





[06/19/18 - 10:05 AM]
CBS TV Studios Announces 5-Year Production Deal with "Star Trek: Discovery" Producer Alex Kurtzman
As part of the new production deal, Kurtzman will supervise the expansion of CBS' "Star Trek" franchise for television, developing new series, mini-series and other content opportunities, including animation.

[06/19/18 - 10:02 AM]
Hulu Acquires Award-Winning Documentary "Crime + Punishment"
The premium streaming service will partner with IFC Films to release the documentary simultaneously in theaters and on Hulu on August 24.

[06/19/18 - 09:40 AM]
CNBC's New Primetime Series "Deadly Rich" Debuts July 9 at 10PM ET/PT
From the producers of "American Greed," the 10 episode true-crime series takes viewers inside the lives and deaths of the one percent, exposing the dirty little secrets of how big money drives people to the ultimate sin.

[06/19/18 - 09:30 AM]
Season Four of Bounce's Hit Comedy "In The Cut" Set to Premiere Mon. July 2 at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT
The series stars Dorien Wilson as Jay Weaver, an accomplished entrepreneur and barbershop owner who is kept on his toes by Cheryl, played by Kellita Smith, the co-owner of the beauty salon next door and his love interest-turned-fiancee.

[06/19/18 - 09:14 AM]
FOX Sports' Presentation of 2018 U.S. Open Championship Is Most-Watched U.S. Open Since 2015
FOX Sports spins the numbers for its coverage to date.

[06/19/18 - 08:12 AM]
Monday's Broadcast Ratings: ABC, "The Bachelorette" Hold Off Competition
The Alphabet takes home top honors in total viewers and adults 18-49.

[06/19/18 - 08:02 AM]
Video: Trailer - "Last Chance U" - New Season, New U
The quaint town of Independence, Kansas, is the new setting, as the underdog Pirates of Independence Community College have a chance to finally stand tall after more than a decade of losses.

[06/19/18 - 07:32 AM]
Video: Featurette Debut - It's "GLOW" Up Time! Watch the Cast Transform Behind the Scenes
Season two launches globally on Netflix next Friday, June 29.

[06/19/18 - 07:03 AM]
FOX Sports Announces BIG3 Broadcast Team for 2018 Season
Charissa Thompson, Mike Hill, and Kristina Pink will rotate as studio hosts for the BIG3 during the 10-week season, setting the stage for viewers between games every Friday night.

[06/19/18 - 06:54 AM]
Netflix Closes First European Overall Series Deal with Baran bo Odar and Jantje Friese, The Creative Duo Behind "Dark"
Under the terms of the deal, Jantje Friese and Baran bo Odar, who hail from Germany, will produce new series and projects for Netflix's 125 million members around the world.

[06/18/18 - 03:19 PM]
VH1's Record Breaking Phenomenon Continues with the Return of "Love & Hip Hop: Hollywood" Monday, July 23 at 8PM ET/PT
Ripped straight from the headlines, Tinseltown heats up as R&B songstress Kimberly Pate, formerly known as K. Michelle, returns to the franchise alongside several newcomers and series vets climbing their way to the top in the toughest city in showbiz.

[06/18/18 - 02:38 PM]
Bravo Media's "Shahs of Sunset" Returns for a New Season on August 2 at 9PM ET/PT
Though feisty best friends Golnesa "GG" Gharachedaghi, Mercedes "MJ" Javid, Mike Shouhed, and Reza Farahan have gone through just about everything together, the adventure is only just beginning as they each embark on the newest chapter in their lives.

[06/18/18 - 02:01 PM]
Global Humanitarian and Music Icon Janet Jackson to Receive Inaugural "Impact' Award at the 2018 Radio Disney Music Awards
Jackson joins previously announced honorees including Carrie Underwood, who will be receiving the "Hero" Award, and Kelly Clarkson, who will be receiving the "Icon" Award.

[06/18/18 - 01:10 PM]
Global Road Entertainment's Unscripted & Alternative Division to Join The Miss America Organization in Producing "The 2019 Miss America Competition"
Award-winning producer Phil Gurin, the company's president of Unscripted & Alternative Television, will join the team serving as an executive producer.

[06/18/18 - 10:34 AM]
"Steven Universe" Returns for Five-Night Event Monday, July 2 on Cartoon Network
The five-episode arc, "Heart of the Crystal Gems," comes on the heels of "A Single Pale Rose," which left fans reeling from the revelations about the Crystal Gems' former leader, Rose Quartz.