Deliveroo v. Dispensaroo – A British Legal Battle Over Cannabis Brand Infringement

An online weed sales site in the UK is targeted by food delivery company over intellectual property rights

In what is certainly a qualifying entry for news of the weird this cannabis Christmas season, this just in from the UK. Deliveroo, the food delivery company, has moved legally to protect its trademarks and brand against Dispensaroo, a completely illegitimate online weed shop selling about €29,000 a month of cannabis and using such proceeds in part to lobby for British cannabis reform.

Dispensaroo is relatively straightforward about its service. Shoppers can add both strains and accessories to their shopping cart and are also offered free shipping and customer service. That said, the owner/operator who goes by a pseudonym in interviews, for obvious reasons, is fairly straightforward in his defiance. “They can’t do sh*t,” with regards to copyright and trademark infringement, the Dispensaroo founder known as ‘S’ told LADbible.

S is also facing up to 14 years imprisonment and an unlimited fine as the founder of this establishment. He believes, however that this is worth it as they are “making a stand with their brand.”

As such, it becomes officially the strangest legal action of the season in the cannabis world. Here’s rooting for Dispensaroo.

The State of British Cannabis Reform

The odd legal battle comes as the UK is now struggling to right itself under both a new King and a new Prime Minister. For those who have never lived in the UK, the transition to a new monarch may seem an odd bit of pomp and ceremony that has no direct bearing on everyday life. How far this is from reality, starting in the legal world where lawyers have to get used to saying KCs (King’s councillors) rather than QCs (Queen’s counsellors). There are also stamps, money and mailboxes to consider, far beyond the peculiarities and sacrifices caused by Brexit and a political class that set sail long ago on the decks of the HMS Pinafore.

However, somewhere down the list, there is also cannabis reform, a revolution that at this point is global. Not even the Brits can sit this one out, as hard as they might be trying currently. This kind of campaign, while certainly oddball and with its dangerous kinks, is a very British response to an issue that is only going to fester before it gets better. This is the land, after all, of Monty Python and dead parrot sketches.

Right now, Sadiq Khan, the mayor of London, who hopefully has a political future in higher office as the Tories lurch towards a general election they are almost sure to lose, is on the right track. Members of the cabinet, including Suella Braverman, seem to believe that reclassification, in the wrong direction, is the way to go when it comes to the plant.

The political schism, in other words, is painful, real, and won’t automatically be solved by the Labour Party, generally.

That is why a stand and deliver political campaign in the form of branding reform may well succeed where politics have failed.

After all this is Britain, land of pirate radio. For those who missed the decade of the 70’s in London, Capitol Radio led the way to a broader media spectrum than just the BBC by broadcasting off a barge in the Thames.

Legalization is at least as much of an issue as deregulation of the airwaves.

This legal battle, in other words, appears to be the cannabis version of the same, albeit with a bit more stringent and scary penalties.

Let battle be joined – somewhere along the line – although it is doubtful that Deliveroo will ever win in court, starting with serving the CEO of the offending firm to begin with.

Ghosting indeed.


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