Julia Child Foundation In Legal Battle With Thermador Oven Manufa

SparklingWaterAugust 29, 2012

Julia Child Foundation In Legal Battle With Thermador Oven Manufacturer

"BOSTON -A foundation set up by late chef Julia Child is locked in a legal fight with the manufacturer of Thermador ovens for touting her use of its high-end appliances...." (see link below for full article on HuffPo).

I read this earlier today. Still chewing on it some as I like Thermador products but not so much their use of Julia. WDYT?

Here is a link that might be useful: Link

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marcolo

One hopes their engineering department is more competent than their marketing department.

Not only will they lose their suit, they have now branded Thermador as the company of rancid sleazebags who steal money from nonprofits by raping the image of America's most-loved culinary figure. Do not look for any celebrity chef to say anything positive about Thermador from here on. Personally I will never use a Thermador product unless the CEO is fired.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 10:20PM
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chac_mool

Good on ya, Marcolo!

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 12:43AM
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boschboy

How sad. It is not just Thermador but the parent company that filed the suit.

BSH Home Appliances Corporation (BSH), headquartered in Irvine, California, is a wholly owned subsidiary of BSH Bosch and Siemens Home Appliances Group based in Munich, Germany.

BSH is the world's third largest leading manufacturer of high-end appliances and sells under the Bosch, Thermador and Gaggenau brands in the U.S.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 11:03AM
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breezygirl

Well, that makes my upcoming DW choice easier. No Bosch.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 1:05PM
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weissman

To play devil's advocate here, Julia Child was a public figure and BSH claims that their ads were factual that Julia used their appliances, which apparently she did. It was the foundation that started the battle with their cease and desist letter although BSH was the first to file suit. Not so clear cut in my opinion which is why this issue is heading to the courts.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 2:24PM
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deeageaux

BSH claims that their ads were factual that Julia used their appliances, which apparently she did. It was the foundation that started the battle with their cease and desist letter although BSH was the first to file suit.

I think it is hillarious that BSH claims using Julia in their ads and promotional materials does not imply endorsement; which Julia never did and was philosophically opposed to.

I also think if we could interview Julia using a medium she would tell us she used a Thermador wall oven and electric cooktop on her show because they were camera/studio friendly but she preferred to use her Garland range when cooking off camera.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 2:56PM
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joeboldt

Here's a good story on the topic.

Here is a link that might be useful: LA Times article

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 3:56PM
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carterkitchen

this looks like a case of any publicity is good publicity...now even more people know that Julia Child used Thermador...people expect lawyers and companies to fight things out but the end result will be that large numbers of people will hear that a principled and anti-consumerist cooking icon liked and used Thermador cooking tools in her private life... that endorsement, even if unintentional, is gold for Thermador.
caspian

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 4:32PM
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marcolo

Incorrect. Thermador's name is now sh**. Probably permanently.

Stealing the endorsement of a woman whose name and face were never, ever for sale. Nice job.

A full-on attack on a foundation dedicated to helping women and culinary advancement. Nice job.

Lying about it. Nice job.

And no, weissman, it's not "not so clear cut." Lots of idiots waste their time in court. Especially after Julie & Julia, any jury will cremate Thermador.

I wish someone would start to picket high end appliance stores, listing all the causes BSH stole from.

Degenerate animals.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 5:55PM
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chac_mool

Yes. And manipulating these facts as they did certainly appears to be very sleazy of Thermador.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 5:57PM
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marcolo

There is also the other issue I alluded to in my first post.

How do you feel celebrity chefs--Emeril, Rachel Ray, Tyler Florence, Nigella Lawson, whoever--how do they now feel toward Thermador?

Do you not think they are right this minute screaming at their producers to rip every Thermador and BSH product out of their kitchens immediately, before their image is raped as well?

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 6:13PM
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chac_mool

A boycott of this ad agency's other clients seems like a good idea as well.

Just now, I went to Thermador's ad agency's website -- see link below -- but when I try to click on "clients" at the bottom of their main page, I see a popup about contacting them; can't get this to work (using Firefox). In other words, its an incompetently designed site.

You have to click on the right arrow (>) to scroll over to the client list, which includes Thermador, Dole, Hilton Garden Inn, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Toshiba, Qualcomm, brands of dates and avocados, and a few others.

Here is a link that might be useful: DGWB

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 6:22PM
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guadalupe

The thermador Julia cooked with was not yet owned or manufactured by Bosch, it was still the original Thermador, I believed manufactured in Virginia.

    Bookmark   August 31, 2012 at 2:31PM
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live_wire_oak

I can't believe the balls here. To not only steal, but to be so brazen as to sue over it. I don't think they have any idea of how negatively that impacts their image. There are thousands of people who may have never heard of Thermador for their small ordinary kitchen redo's, but you can bet every one of them has heard of Julia Child. I'd bet none of them will ever consider any of the BSH products now. Not to mention the fact that it offends the sensibilities of thousands of pros across the country who will no longer recommend BSH products for people who would be in a price point to purchase the more spendy lines. In fact, in another thread asking about Thermador products, I just recommended that the poster look at this thread and then look elsewhere for their appliances, and I'll continue to do the same until they not only apologize, but donate a substantial amount to the foundation.

This is NOT the case of the old adage that "any publicity is good publicity". Perhaps some of the corporate hacks who've been jumping on the social media bandwagon should take a look at this thread. And perhaps everyone who reads this thread should comment on BSH's Facebook page and then suggest that their friends do the same.

Here is a link that might be useful: Thermador on Facebook

    Bookmark   September 1, 2012 at 12:12PM
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live_wire_oak

Evidently, BSH is on Facebook as Bosch, but that would also be a good place to register your displeasure with Julia's image being stolen.

Here is a link that might be useful: Bosch Appliances

    Bookmark   September 1, 2012 at 12:16PM
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SparklingWater

Yes, it stirs one's cooking juices and not in a tasty way. Thermador might have wanted to consider the negative PR from its ploy on Julia Child.

My hardest kitchen upgrade decision remains appliances and I have spent hours looking at posts by Thermador users and sellers in addition to reviewing the 2" thick spiral Thermador sent me at request. Bottom line seems to be their star burners offers a heating alternative in the closed burner world but their ovens are mentioned as not distributing heat evenly in cooking/baking (I have a Thermador oven and can attest to this). Thermador isn't known for their refrigerators although the Freedom Column are different, perhaps noisy, yet appealing to some. A Thermador dishwasher is essentially Bosch at a higher price. So, that to me suggests the Thermador cook or range top would be a go for purchase for the star burners, along with a good Bosch DW, but skip a gas or dual fuel Thermador range and refrigerator, sticking with a Wolf or Electrolux oven and Subzero, Leibherr or even Kitchen Aid refrigerator. Thermador is up their on price too, without the name and customer service longevity of Wolf/Subzero, and maybe of late, Electrolux (no affiliation). Thermador probably put me off with any definite purchase by this action.

Advice to Thermador: a swift dropping of your claim to Julia Child range association as well as a public apology will help you more than continuation of fighting with the Julia Child Foundation.

Let's see if Thermador sees the light in the sand. RIP, Julia Child and thank you.

    Bookmark   September 1, 2012 at 2:26PM
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GreenDesigns

I'm truly shocked that there are so many current posts on this forum from people still considering using Thermador. I guess that there is a reason that corporations have no ethics. Sleaze pays. People would rather save a dollar and deal with a sleazy company than spend a dollar and a quarter dealing with an ethical one. There just aren't enough people who are truly offended by this behavior to vote with their dollars. And that is terribly terribly sad.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2012 at 7:49PM
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idrive65

"Incorrect. Thermador's name is now sh**. Probably permanently."

While I agree with your feelings on this matter, the sad truth is that most people won't care. The new generation of home owners barely knows who Julia Child is, and they are accustomed to loose boundaries of copyright ownership.

    Bookmark   September 3, 2012 at 11:46AM
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brickeyee

"they are accustomed to loose boundaries of copyright ownership. "

Good thing the copyright owners do not agree.

Under the new laws (digital millennium copyright act) this could cost Thermador (and there advertising company) real money.

    Bookmark   September 3, 2012 at 12:44PM
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idrive65

Regardless of whether copyright lawyers agree or not, or whether Thermador wins or loses this fight, or whether we think Thermador is despicable, I was addressing marcolo's point that their name would be mud. There are a whole lot of customers for whom this is a total non-issue. To them, JC is a long dead dinosaur (if they even know who she is) and the suit won't affect their decision at all.

And if the powers-that-be at Thermador think the free advertising that they get out of this lawsuit is more valuable than the business they lose from people like us that find them distasteful, they will go forward with it. "I don't care what the newspapers say about me as long as they spell my name right."

    Bookmark   September 3, 2012 at 7:40PM
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chac_mool

Thermador's (and their ad agency's) assertion that Julia used this brand is lost on potential customers who never heard of JC, as well as those believing her to be a long dead dinosaur.

The marketing campaign seems directed at people who know who Julia Child was, if perhaps only from the movie.

    Bookmark   September 3, 2012 at 8:53PM
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chris11895

Maybe it's because I grew up in Mass and have a fair amount of foodie friends, but I'm seeing this posted on a lot of Facebook feeds right now. I think Julia Child is such a beloved figure that even those who aren't gastronomes would scoff at this idea. I brought this up at a family gathering today and everyone, TKO, Foodie or not, was horrified that someone would do that to *Julia Child*. Most of the comments were "Well I guess we know what appliance brand *not* to buy!".
I just can't believe they have the audacity to fight her foundation in court.

    Bookmark   September 3, 2012 at 10:28PM
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breezygirl

LWO--I politely posted in Bosch's facebook page that they should stop using JC's image without permission. I guess I shouldn't be surprised that they took my comment down. I wonder how many others have tried to post there and had theirs deleted? I also linked the article on my facebook page.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 12:49AM
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SparklingWater

Good for you breezygirl! Bosch won't face/allow the truth? Or, current mantra:

"If you repeat a lie enough, it becomes the new truth".

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 10:04AM
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cottonpenny

I think it's rotten and clearly wrong.

I know who Julia Child was. We didn't have cable when I was younger so watched a ton of PBS. My grandma gave me a copy of "mastering the art of french cooking" for my HS graduation. Julia received an honorary degree at my college graduation.

But I guess I'm not outraged enough to cancel the order on my Bosch DW. Too inconvenient. Then I'd have to buy Miele and that's more $$$. I care, but only to a point.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 10:55AM
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dodge59

Well, cottonpenny, obviously you are not willing to "not put your money where your mouth is"---ah er I should say, "Where your typing finger is"!

Lotta good choices for dishwashers besides Bosch!

But , as they say, "It's Your kitchen and your money" but watch out!!! We Have seen a number of posts, (In fact now a new post has been added), about Bosch Dishwashers that Stink, Sure hope You don't get one of those, although "Julia May" (LOL)!

Gary

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 12:17PM
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marcolo

Ah yes, the true measure of morality. There's right, there's wrong, and then there's inconvenient.

It takes accomplices to make a theft pay off.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 1:47PM
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cottonpenny

Oh well. I didn't care about Chick-fil-A either.

But seriously, what good dishwashers are there? Whirlpool/KA/JA supposedly cause fires, now you can't buy Bosch. GE? Samsung? Sure, I've heard Miele's are great but start at about 50% more than I paid for Bosch.

All companies are crooked to some extent, just some are stupid and get caught. You don't think Wolf would've tried the same thing if Julia had a Wolf?

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 1:55PM
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chac_mool

Actually, I think everyone actively looking for appliances including those with recently ordered Thermador stuff are in the best possible position to send a very strong message to this company about the stupidity of their advertizing campaign.

Just mention it. Including how sleazy it is. And let them know you are re-evaluating your buying decision (even if you're not), because their campaign is disrespectful to someone in cooking whom you respect. Ask some difficult questions here, like "What were you thinking?". Ask if this reprehensible reasoning appears in their appliances, as well. Make them actually work for the sale. For sure, whether you buy or not, encourage the sales staff and your local appliance store owner to convey your feelings over this marketing scheme to the company's head office.

Even if you end up buying Thermador in the end, you are in a strong position to send an important message, because you are the people this despicable campaign is trying to reach.

I don't have that powerful a voice. We won't be remodeling our kitchen here for a long time...

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 2:45PM
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GreenDesigns

Kitchenaid makes very nice dishwashers, with heated dry and a hard food disposal, which you cannot get on a Bosch. They are the quietest of any DW's that have that hard food grinder in them as well. Just as quiet as many Boschs. And they are a much less reprehensible company.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 3:14PM
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cottonpenny

Yeah, but they don't sit flush if paneled. And no heated dry/hard food disposal model is as quiet as my soon-to-be Bosch. And I don't care about heated dry since all it seems to do is melt stuff in my current DW, so I've used it about twice.

Here is a link that might be useful: Making appliances that catch fire isn't reprehensible?

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 3:46PM
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deeageaux

Food disposers just add noise,energy cost,and repair cost.

Heated dry melts plastics and stresses other dishes.

The alternative to high-end Bosch and Thermador is Miele.

The alternative to mid-end Bosch is maybe Asko. They tend to be louder but many think the quality of the noise is easier on the ears.

There is no real alternative to low-end Bosch.

I think BSH is in the wrong but Julia Child is not Jesus Christ.

You will take my Gaggenau oven from my cold dead fingers LOL.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 4:09PM
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marcolo

It takes a tremendous amount of gall for people to prance onto an advice forum asking perfect strangers to care about their problems, then proudly declare they don't care about anyone else's.

Having one's intelligence insulted with poor rationalizations to defend thievery rarely puts one in a helpful mood.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 4:24PM
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dodge59

I wouldn't be too harsh, but most of us agree here, that was "pure Sleeze" what Thermador has done.

I would accuse cottonpenny of "Selective Reading".
Tons of folks happy with their KA Dishwashers and if the cabinets can be made deep enough, the KA will fit flush, there have been posts on this. Several of our favorite companies here in GW have had appliances recalled due to fires, Yet folks continue to buy that brand of appliances.

I've had 3 or so KA dishwashers and all have been trouble free, and I NEVER had anything melt due to the heated dryer!
I would have bought one this time, but back in 2006, only Miele had that top cutlery tray, which was a "Must Have" for us.

Asko makes DW's and lotta folks happy with them too, albeit, they seem to have the most "Mixed Posts" about stuff fitting in them.

AS for Diego, BLAMMMM, (one less Gag in the World)--LOL

Unsigned

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 5:27PM
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dodge59

Recall to Inspect Thermador Combination Thermal/Microwave Ovens Models CM301 and CM302

Dear Customer:

Thermador has identified a potential safety problem with models CM301 and CM302 combination thermal/microwave ovens manufactured before November 2000. The oven door may not lock during the self-clean cycle. If someone were to open the oven door during the self-clean cycle, food particles or other combustible materials could catch fire and injure them. The potential for a problem was identified during normal product testing. To date, there have been no incidents reported. Again, this problem can happen only during self-cleaning.

There are probably more posts about Thermador recalls, but, as You can see, Kitchenaid does not have an "Exclusive" on potential fires! Many of us are ticked however at the way Kitcheaid has handled their oven self cleaning problems, alto not to the point where most of us would "Boycott their dishwashers.

Gary

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 5:58PM
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westsider40

Marcolo, do yo have an opinion about this?

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 12:20AM
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cottonpenny

Honestly, I don't mean to offend anyone. I am not proud of anything.

Old Navy just did something quite similar to Kim Kardashian and no one boycotted Old Navy. We're all probably still buying BP gas. Samsung violated Apple's patent and is operating sweatshops in China and no one is boycotting Samsung.

Comparing evils doesn't diminish the rottenness of what BSH has done, but I think to be morally consistent, one would have to be doing a whole lot more boycotting than just BSH. And LLBean doesn't sell dishwashers.

Gary - My cabs are already installed, panel just sitting there waiting for a DW. DW sitting in appliance store waiting to be installed. So too late to do any recessing or deepening of cabinets.

And I have managed to melt several things on my heated dry in my current DW - mostly small little plastic containers that I use for my DS's lunches or chopsticks that fall through the racks with the spray and end up on the coil. I'm glad it doesn't happen to you - it's annoying when it does happen.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 8:30AM
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marcolo

I'll skip the comparisons between Julia Child and a Kardashian, and point out that BSH is not only trying to commandeer Julia Child's image but also destroy her foundation. She left her intellectual property rights to the foundation to support its charitable work. BSH was the first to go to court claiming that the foundation has no such rights and the First Amendment allows it to print anything it wants. In other words, it wants to strip the foundation of its assets so it can steal them. Without those assets, the foundation will no longer be able to survive.

I'm thinking at this point that the BSH board and CEO need to go.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 10:59AM
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westsider40

Marcolo, are you a lawyer?

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 1:27PM
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cyberspacer

Yes... Bosch/Siemens and their cronies at Purcell-Muray (BSH distributor) gotta go! Sleazy. But then again, the entire home appliance market is sleazy, not unlike other big businesses.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2012 at 4:59AM
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SparklingWater

Two well known home appliance review blogs have just embraced Thermador in their quest of lauding their product in Julia's hands. Both specifically mention this move in separate online reviews.

cyberspacer points to the home appliance market as sleazy. That's exactly how I felt when I read these blogs; overall it lessened my respect their reviews are unbiased, and heightened my view they will sell their soul depending on which way the wind blows. That left a bad taste in my mouth. Julia would never have wanted that, as she was all about taste.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2012 at 8:44AM
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