Burning Man burning up over Quiznos ad

AP News
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Posted: Sep 12, 2015 6:40 PM

RENO, Nev. (AP) — Burning Man is considering legal action against sandwich chain Quiznos over a video ad that pokes fun at the festival, an event organizer said.

Spokesman Jim Graham said Friday that festival officials see the video as theft of Burning Man's intellectual property.

"We'll be coordinating with our legal team to see what action we can take," Graham said.

The Denver-based Quiznos never reached out to them before putting out the advertisement, Graham added.

The YouTube video parodies the upcoming movie, "Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials," and portrays the characters frolicking and eating Quiznos at Burning Man in the northern Nevada desert. The video was posted Tuesday and has been viewed more than 760,000 times.

Representatives from Quiznos were not immediately available for comment Saturday. Graham said Burning Man hasn't yet contacted the toasted sandwich company.

The weeklong counterculture festival, which attracts more than 70,000 people to the Black Rock Desert, ended Monday. According to Graham, after the Burn is when operators get busy deflecting companies' attempts to market products by pairing them with festival content.

"We get a quite a number of requests each year from companies wanting to gift participants with their product or to capture imagery or video of their products at the event, and we turn them all down," Graham said.

The event website states that attendees are limited by the use of photos and videos, "along with Burning Man's most recognizable words, symbols and designs."

The San Francisco-based Burning Man has taken outside entities to task before over intellectual property rights, the Reno Gazette-Journal reported (http://on.rgj.com/1NvW7xe ). According to Graham, Burning Man won a lawsuit against Girls Gone Wild, which films and markets video of topless women.

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Information from: Reno Gazette-Journal, http://www.rgj.com