The Sartorialist v. The Campus Sartorialist

Remember that time the Sartorialist (aka Scott Schuman) threatened to file a lawsuit against fellow street style site, Campus Sartorialist, last year? We do. It seems Schuman was either on a power trip and/or being overly vigilant in policing his trademark (which was federally registered in 2008) when he sent Robert Wainblat, a Duke University graduate and the founder of the Campus Sartorialist, a cease and desist email in August 2012, claiming trademark infringement and asking for the blog to change its name. 

When Wainblat didn't fall for Schuman's threat, Schuman called the Daily Beast with a comment about the fiasco: "I commend their entrepreneurial spirit and think the idea is great, but they don't need my name to continue to be successful. If the site keeps growing it's going to create a lot of confusion down the road. People might think The Sartorialist sponsors their site. They have to be prepared for success and using an already established, trademarked name will just make that more difficult."

When we spoke to Wainblat, who's site launched in 2010 and chronicles college style from over 40 different universities across the world, from Harvard to the Tianjin University in China, about the rumored lawsuit last year, he didn't seem phased. As for whether he had heard anything after he received the cease and desist, he said: "No updates. [Schuman] must have realized his case would be weak and didn't pursue. Same thing happened to the New York Sartorialist."

It appears Schuman went on a bit of a cease and desist streak back in 2012. More recently, Wainblatt told us that the whole drama with Schuman has had nothing but positive results. He said: "I haven't heard from Scott or any of his people in over a year. We've grown a lot since last year, traffic has increased, we redesigned the website and more photographers have joined the project. If anything, the whole thing only worked for us, giving us more exposure." 

Also worthy of note: Wainblat's site no longer contains the "Not affiliated in any way with Scott Schuman, The Sartorialist," disclaimer that previously appeared on the site. Looks like Schuman's cease and desist emails were of little effect. Both the Campus Sartorialist and the New York Sartorialist (which is currently on hiatus in London but has garner 18,000 fans on Facebook) are still going strong. If Schuman can't enforce ownership over the word "sartorialist," I do wonder of Nasty Gal can really enforce a monopoly over the word "Nasty" in the e-commerce realm.