Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Diamonds are Forever; What's in a slogan?

U.S. District Court Judge John Adams of Ohio ordered Sterling Jewelers Inc. and Zale Corporation into mediation in a diamond advertising lawsuit. Sterling, a unit of Signet, sued Zale last fall, alleging Zale's advertisements for the Celebration Fire diamond as "the most brilliant diamond in the world" were false and misleading. Sterling, based in Akron, said its tests found that its own diamonds are as glittery as those sold in Zales. In the lawsuit, Sterling demanded that Zale's advertisements be pulled. However, multimillion-dollar ads remained in place throughout the winter holiday shopping season and the court denied Sterling's request to pull them. At a preliminary injunction hearing earlier this year, the judge said that Sterling had not shown that it would suffer financially, even if it could prove that Zale's boast of the most brilliant polished diamond in the world was false. In accordance with the referral to mediate, both parties have until April 10th to review, confer and appoint court approved federal mediators and must come to agreement by May 2nd. Sometimes a mediation following a TRO, which is like a mini-trial, is more productive, as the parties have seen a preview of the court's reaction to claims and defenses and are ready for a self-determined solution. See stories here-- and and