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Trademark Law

M&M Lawsuit Just One Part of Naked Cowboy’s Financial Plan

Posted Feb 21, 2008 1:59 PM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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The singing Naked Cowboy has ambitions beyond winning his trademark lawsuit against the Mars candy company over a billboard featuring an M&M dressed in the same attire—or lack of it—that he sports.

The cowboy, Robert Burck, is seeking $6 million, but he already makes a pretty good living, the Washington Post reports. He owns a Cadillac Escalade that he drives to New York’s Times Square where he “strums, sings and preens, seven days a week.” The newspaper describes his act this way:

“Strictly speaking, the Naked Cowboy is neither naked nor a cowboy. Behind that strategically placed red, white and blue guitar, a pair of tighty-whities are wrapped around what he proudly calls his ‘striated glutes,’ with ‘Naked Cowboy’ scrawled on the back side. And he hails from Cincinnati, which is rarely confused with the O.K. Corral. Woefully Underdressed Ohio Guy, of course, isn't as zippy.”

Burck can make up to $10,000 a day for a personal appearance and a couple hundred dollars an hour in tips. "Look, I've got thousands of dollars in the bank,” he told the newspaper. “I've got no bills, no operating costs. I park for free. I live with my girlfriend in Secaucus, [N.J.]” He hopes one day to be able to afford a yacht, a private jet and a mansion.

The newspaper observes that Burck has a way with the ladies and notes that Mars has already pulled the billboard. “If the company melts in his hands, it will hardly be a first,” the story concludes.

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