Companies can be sticklers about protecting their brands, but generally a site that promotes the heck out of their brand for free is okay—unless you’re the lawyers at Ferrero. They recently sent a cease and desist letter to theWorld Nutella Day site so it will be closing down for good. Site owner Sara Rosso posted the following sad message about the closure.
On May 25, 2013, I’ll be darkening the World Nutella Day site, nutelladay.com, and all social media presence (Facebook, Twitter), in compliance with a cease-and-desist I received from lawyers representing Ferrero, SpA (makers of Nutella)…
Seven years after the first World Nutella Day in 2007, I never thought the idea of dedicating a day to come together for the love of a certain hazelnut spread would be embraced by so many people! I’ve seen the event grow from a few hundred food bloggers posting recipes to thousands of people Tweeting about it, pinning recipes on Pinterest, and posting their own contributions on Facebook! There have been songs sung about it, short films created for it, poems written for it, recipes tested for it, and photos taken for it.
The cease-and-desist letter was a bit of a surprise and a disappointment, as over the years I’ve had contact and positive experiences with several employees of Ferrero, SpA., and with their public relations and brand strategy consultants, and I’ve always tried to collaborate and work together in the spirit and goodwill of a fan-run celebration of a spread I (to this day) still eat.
I have hope that this is not a goodbye to World Nutella Day forever, for the fans’ sake, and hopefully it will live on in one form or another in the future.
On that note, Rosso told HuffPo that she would like for Ferraro to take over World Nutella Day and that she would have been “open to any kind of discussion” and that “[it] didn’t have to be a legal document”.
It’s a sad, sad day for Nutella fans. Go break out a fresh jar and drown your sorrows with a few spoonfuls of chocolate-hazelnut goodness—or don’t in protest of Ferraro’s treatment of this fan and their ignorance with regard to the power of the internet.