Whose Quack is the Loudest?

There’s a war of the quackers in San Francisco involving the same company that ushers tourists around Philly. And, both sides are sounding off.
 The Bay Quackers, a tour company that releases ducks in the streets of San Francisco is being sued by their rival company, Ride the Ducks.
The quackers give tours on land and water. The hand passengers a kazoo-like duckbill that they are encouraged to use to quack like ducks as they  pass by famous sights.
Ride the Ducks, based outside of Atlanta, also operates tours in several cities, including Philadelphia, Baltimore and Branson, Mo., gives out a similar device and they claim they own the right to quack.
 The dispute started in 2005 when the Bay Quackers started giving tours in San Fran  after owner John Scannell ran a similar company in Seattle.
“It’s been a market we’ve been wanting to get into for many years,” said Scannell. “We saw it as a great opportunity,” he said.
Ride the Ducks wanted to stop Bay Quackers from using their signature device because they say that Bay Quackers has violated their sound trademark.
Before starting the tours last summer, lawyers for Ride the Ducks warned the Bay Quackers not to use their quacking device, because they hold rights to the sound device since the mid-1990s.
“If you blew theirs and ours, you wouldn’t hear any difference,” said Bob Salmon, vice president of marketing and sales for Ride the Ducks, whose company started using its kazoo-like device for more than a decade.
“It’s a very important part of our product. We’re very interactive with people on the streets. And, the way that we interact is using our Wacky Quackers,” said Salmon.
Bay Quackers believes that Ride the Ducks is trying to put them out of business  -- an accusation that Salmon denies.
“We don’t have a problem with competition, even direct competition,” said Salmon. “But we have a problem with them infringing our trademark,” he said. 
Now it's up to the courts to decide who'll have the last quack.

Contact Us