This is Larry. Larry is a stooge. One of the three stooges. Seriously, there are three of them and they are just as ornery and hilarious as the actual Three Stooges. It is who they are named off after all.
But what is in a name? Lately, I’ve been thinking about that a lot.
When I came up with the name Montana Rose Photography, I had done extensive research. I made sure the name fit me. I made sure that there were no businesses of any type with that moniker on Facebook. I made sure that there were no known businesses outside of Facebook with that moniker. I made sure that I was the only one and I did everything that I was supposed to do. I registered it as a business. I got a tax ID. I did everything short of trademarking it. I didn’t have that kind of time or money and never really thought that it would be an issue. I thought that people would be just as courteous as I was. I thought that people would be original.
Then on October 23, 2017 another Montana Rose Photography popped up. This time, it was someone out of Michigan. A kid it seems. I debated and did my research about what I could do. It was just a name and they were just on Facebook, but still. It is my name. Mine. Comes to find out with us being in different geographical locations and not having the same clientele, there is not a lot that can be done without a trademark. I chose to leave her alone about it.
She chose not to do the same. Mainly because someone called her out on the fact that there was already an established business with that name. Turns out she was aware but chose to go with it anyway, because it is supposedly her name. She wanted to let me know that she didn’t plan on making a big deal out of it and that she didn’t want me to use her pictures as well as to let me know she wouldn’t use mine. What an odd thing to say.
I made it clear to her that without a trademark, she too would have nothing to stand on even if she chose to. I also made it clear that under no circumstance would I ever use her pictures. Arrogance side, it is mainly because I am not that type of person. To take someone else’s pictures? Never for a moment would I have thought about that or would I have been concerned about her taking mine. I mean, I know that people do it but for her to take my pictures, I would have had to of posted it which means there is evidence of where it comes from. Um….yeah.
With all that said, I had started to pondered changing my name. I had wondered if I should anyway. Montana Rose was becoming associated with failure in my head. Yesterday, I had made the decision to do so after I found some names that were “eh” but not taken by anyone else that can be found. Facebook or beyond. Then I started getting angry and frustrated again.
Maybe it was having to put so much work into finding yet another name. Or maybe it was the fact that this girl chose to do a search, discovered there was another business by that name and chose to use it anyway, or maybe it was the fact I like my name and I honestly don’t know if I want to change it. I mean, it is established. It is registered as a business. My blog, my Instagram, my website, and my Facebook page….all Montana Rose. All been floating around for years. Why should I give that up, because someone wasn’t as considerate and original as me?
I can’t even use my own name, because there is already a Shawn Marie Photography out there. Can’t use my initials, because there is already a photography business out there with that name. So, what is a girl to do? I don’t have the financial comfort for a legal battle. And I honestly think it is just a kid. That would explain a lot. As well as that common sense is the pony that keeps running into an electric fence.
I had decided to change it at that time, because I was thinking about this art show that I would like to try and enter. I started thinking about how well that could go if I was accepted. I then started thinking about what would happen if people went out there and searched on Facebook for my page. How would they know? Would they be confused that there were two?
Then what if I change it? This would be the third name change? I had already re-invented once. Could my followers even tolerate another name change? Would they even want to? Social Media is such a cheeky little monkey anyway. What to do?
What are your thoughts? What would you do?
Have a beautiful day and tomorrow.
Montana Rose Photography