MSN Music Blog - Reverb

What's in a name? How about $500 million

Chubby Checker sues HP for stupid stunt

By Mark C. Brown Feb 14, 2013 11:31AM
Chubby Checker

As Spinal Tap once noted it’s a thin line between clever and stupid. And it looks like Hewlett-Packard found that line – and ran right past it.

For starters – really? There’s really a need out there for an app that measures the size of a man’s, um, package? While it’s a great topic for jokes and myth, anyone who feels the need to download such an app would be a field day for Sigmund Freud.

While it might have meant it all in good fun – you enter a man’s shoe size and it gives you more info than you need to know – it’s the naming that pushed it over the edge. They called the app “Chubby Checker,” a moniker that any creative 7th-grader with any basic musical knowledge would find hilarious.

Unfortunately, HP (which hosted the app) and the now-defunct company that created the app forgot that the real Chubby Checker is alive and well and trademarked his name long ago. Even though the app was pulled from the market by HP last September, HP just got hit with a half-billion dollar lawsuit for defaming the singer’s name.

Guys? Next time get the proper clearances, or go with someone unlikely to sue or who might laugh it off. Call it the "Jack Johnson" and get him to endorse it. That's a win/win.


Feb 15, 2013 2:54PM
hey! Thought MacCarthy said no fat jokes
Feb 15, 2013 1:34PM

Cubby Checker is a designated friend at the bar who does not drink. They are there to evaluate if the female is too overweight for his other drunk buddies.

Feb 15, 2013 11:38AM
HP was perhaps thinking of the great appeal this app would have for the loud pro gun crowd. They talk guns for protection, but buy them as a substitute to bolster their doubts about their manhood. A chubby checker would allow them to lie about their shoe size, self deception is common. HINT--buy a cod piece, Mr Macho.
Feb 15, 2013 11:13AM
Feb 15, 2013 10:56AM
What was HP thinking?? Even if your musical experience consists mostly of "American Idol," certainly you have heard of Chubby Checker.  And if his name is trademarked, that name is protected for all time (he is still alive, and in the case of so many entertainers, CMG Worldwide has essentially put a perpetual copyright on a lot of their names). 
Feb 15, 2013 10:55AM

HP might not have realized he's still in business but I think he is sounding great as ever!

Feb 15, 2013 10:06AM

I thought the 'how high you can through your phone' app was the dumbest. I worked in advertising

a long time ago and most were so careful about the legalities. There is so many infringements

going on today, i wonder what happened to common sense. The add co. they used should be included in the suite. even if chubby checker had not trademarked his name ,he would have grounds to sue. Advertisers need a wake up call Sadly I don't think they will get one

Feb 15, 2013 8:57AM
I hope Chubby Checker gets every penny of his $500 million lawsuit against Hewlett-Packard for taking his name and applying it to an app.  And I hope he gets punitive damages, too, because HP is perhaps one of the worst companies in the country, run by liars and thieves and cheats.  HP products SUCK!!!  And not in a good way!!! 
Feb 15, 2013 8:32AM
Ha ha ha! And who is at the helm of HP? Meg Whitman! PRICELESS, I LOVE IT! Mama Karma can be a betch when crossed! OWN IT MEG!
It looks like Chubby Checker is about to get PAID for something incredibly stupid that HP did not have to do in the 1st place.
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