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Lawsuit of the Day: Holy Pancakes! IHOP Sues Church for Trademark Infringement

Hungry for a little entertaining litigation? Well grab your container of artificially flavored boysenberry syrup and head for federal court in Los Angeles.

That's where IHOP -- the International House of Pancakes -- is suing IHOP -- the International House of Prayer -- for trademark infringement and dilution. According to this article in the Kansas City Star, the pancake chain decided to sue the church only after repeated requests that the church cease using the well-known four-letter acronym went unheeded.

The church, based in Kansas City has been around for over ten years, and "operates 24/7/365, sending a never-ending digital signal of prayers to Jerusalem, where it streams live on God TV for broadcast all over the world." Its ultimate mission: "drawing thousands from around the world to south Kansas City to prepare for 'end times."

Sounds like you'd have to be pretty confused to accidentally walk into that place expecting a cup of coffee and a funny face chocolate chip pancake. But IHOP's IP police are taking no chances. Why the urgency all of a sudden?

“They’ve expanded -- and now some of the branches are serving food,” [pancake house spokesman Patrick] Lenow said. 

The guy at the RDM Random Remarks blog said it best: only in America.

(Thanks to for the photo.)

Posted by Eric Lipman on September 15, 2010 at 01:23 PM | Permalink | Comments (10)


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