© By Othmar Vohringer
Some of my regular readers may remember a post I made on September 26, 2007, “Disgruntled Hunters Take Scent-Lok On”. If you can’t remember I don’t blame you because I couldn’t either until yesterday when I read two newspaper articles about the case.
It’s been 4 years since five Minnesota hunters brought a lawsuit against ALS Enterprises, the manufacturer of Scent-Lok products, and some of its retail partners. The plaintiffs claimed that Scent-Lok and its affiliates duped hunters out of millions of dollars with false advertising about the effectiveness of their product.
Last week, in the United States District Court in Minnesota, Judge Richard Kyle ruled that ALS had falsely claimed that its products were based on "odor eliminating technology" or were "odor eliminating clothing." The word "eliminate" was key in the judge's decision. Read the full article here.
The manufacturers of the Scent-Lok products respectfully disagree with the court's ruling that "odor eliminate" can only mean 100% elimination. There are many products on the market advertised as "eliminating" some condition and people understand that they do not eliminate the condition 100%. A search of the term “eliminate odor” produced over 1.9 million references to the term. A search of “odor eliminator” produced 281,000 results.
Of note, the court’s ruling does not relate to the efficacy of Scent-Lok products to perform in the field. Scent-Lok products work, and work well. Laboratory tests, including tests conducted in the lawsuit show that Scent-Lok carbon-containing clothing dramatically outperforms no-carbon clothing at adsorbing odors. You can read the full response here.
It is my personal opinion that companies should be held to certain standard in their advertising. However, on the other hand it just makes me laugh how many people seem to abandon all commonsense and actually believe what the advertising promises. I fear that this case will serve as an example for many others to follow. Who will be next? A broadhead manufacturer claiming that his arrowheads are deadlier on deer then those of the competition? Will it be a camouflage company claiming that their camo pattern will make a hunter invisible to deer? The possibilities for money grabbing lawyers and disgruntled hunters blaming their lack of hunting success on others rather than on themselves are endless.
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Tags: Scent-Lok, Advertising, Court Ruling, Minnesota, Hunting Products