Bill Murray Golf Sends Humorous Response To Doobie Brothers Over Cease-And-Desist Letter
Bill Murray‘s William Murray Golf has responded to the Doobie Brothers’ cease-and-desist letter with an equally humorous message, similarly posted publicly on Twitter. Alexander Yoffe, who wrote on behalf of the brand, used the opportunity to compliment Doobie Brothers’ lawyer Peter Paterno on his “levity with the law,” make several Doobie Brothers’ puns, and extend an olive branch towards them and their legal team.
In the immortal words of the @TheDoobieBros—"What the people need is a way to make them smile."
— William Murray Golf (@WMurrayGolf) September 25, 2020
“Both our firm, and the good folks at William Murray Golf, are indeed fans of the Doobie Brothers’ music,” Yoffe started his letter. “We appreciate your firm’s choice of ‘Takin’ It to the Streets,’ rather than to the courts, which are already overburdened ‘Minute by Minute’ with real problems.”
He went on to try to assuage some of the band’s legal concerns, but in the letter did not agree to stop using the song or pay for its rights.
“I am sure that Howard King of your firm, who argued that the song ‘Blurred Lines’… did not infringe on Marvin Gaye‘s composition ‘Got to Give It Up,’ would agree that your client was not harmed in these circumstances,” he wrote.
Then, in an effort to win the Doobie Brothers and their lawyers over, he offered them free William Murray Golf merchandise, asserting that the brand offered “some of the most clever and creative lifestyle wear available.”
Some fans of Murray, after reading the exchange, appreciated the civility and humor in the dispute, giving the company the benefit of the doubt despite Yoffe’s lack of acknowledgement of the licensing fee itself.
I think this is great!! The whole story made me laugh at a time when I sure could use a good laugh. I think Mr. Murray will do the right thing and pay up. I applaud the approach taken by both parties. Agreements can sometimes be reached by being kind to one another.
— Patricia Davis (@pd1751) September 26, 2020
If you really think that Bill Murray himself had something to do with not paying the royalties, and if you really think his company is NOT going to pay the royalties, you have a poor sense of the real world.
— Drew Jacobs (@FunnyDrewJacobs) September 28, 2020
Nonetheless, the majority of the Twitter response seemed to be people frustrated with the brand’s seeming resistance to pay the licensing fee upfront, regardless of whether they enjoyed the letter’s comedic content.
Pay the license fee. As an actor and some think, comedian, Bill Murray understands Intellectual Property Theft.
License the damn song or stop using it.
It isn’t funny anymore @AlexYoffe.
— JEFSantamonica (@JEFSantaMonica) September 26, 2020
Nice to see lawyers bring humor to these things, but you still owe them all some cash.
— Catherine Algeri (@CatherineAlgeri) September 26, 2020
Seriously. Art isn’t free.
— chris B (@cwbonthings) September 26, 2020
The Doobie Brothers and Paterno have not yet responded to the letter, and neither party has clarified whether or not the band received due compensation.