Starbuzz Serves Critic With Subpoena, Free Speech & Privacy Concerns
New developments in the Starbuzz lawsuits debacle have surfaced on the Starbuzztobaccolawsuits.com page. On Thursday, Nick Apromollo was served with a subpoena to deliver a deposition in regards to his involvement with the starbuzztobaccolawsuits.com website, to be held on December 1st of this year.
The subpoena damans that Apromollo appear along with a variety of documents, some of which sound legitimate, such as, “Documents provided to You by Taqseem during the Relevant Time Period.”, “Documents in your possession and custody obtained from any source relating to Starbuzz, Taqseem, the Taqseem Lawsuit, or the Social Smoke Oppositions.” and “Documents evidencing any payments and/or products that You have received from Taqseem during the Relevant Period.”
Others, however, seem downright silly. For example, “Documents that support the statement that You made on the Website that ‘Which unless you are braindead, its pretty simple to understand that “White Peach” is just about as generic as it gets’ “ and “Documents that support the statement that You made on the Website that, ‘Starbuzz Tobacco Company is bullying smaller tobacco companies by filing lawsuit after lawsuit claiming that these companies gain an unfair advantage because consumers confuse their products with Starbuzz products, and are making money off the names that Starbuzz created and brought attention to. This is simply not true.’ “.
Other documents demanded as part of the subpoena may be chilling to those who have publically shared their opinion on the matter. For example, “Documents evidencing the names and e-mail addresses for the person who made the comment ‘One of my local suppliers has been telling me for ages about this company’s unethical business practices. Nothing I’ll go into here, but apparently they’re the reason why Nakhla is almost impossible to come by in ****.’ “
Apromollo has, however, assured his readers, saying, “those of you who have [commented] are… safe, as I do not have any info about you, never had info about you, didn’t seek info about you, and WILL NOT seek or provide info about you.”
Although Starbuzz has refused to comment on the situation, and plenty of attempts to gather comments have been made, there is still a gradually growing number of hookah smokers who have decided to boycott the company, in favor of the under-dogs.
The Starbuzz lawsuit fiasco started in July 2010, when documents came to light revealing Starbuzz’ legal action against Taqseem, Inc. Better known for their tobacco, Tonic. The original document cited some surprisingly generic tobacco flavors, such as Guava, Sweet Melon and Sex on the Beach, of which Starbuzz inexplicably owns the trademarks.