The NYT Dealbook, Steven Davidoff reporting, recounts Twinkies rising from the dead, not only surviving the liquidation of the company that made them, but actually thriving. It appears that Twinkies as brand are worth more than Twinkies as food item.
This celebration of branding — Twinkie as junk food Phoenix — does not ignore but quite consciously minimizes the enormous human cost associated with the events of the last year: jobs lost, careers ended or redirected, lives disrupted. (And that’s before we get to Twinkie fans running out to stock up on Twinkies last Fall when they heard that the company was going bankrupt.) That’s a pretty good micro illustration of a macro problem of IP conversations generally. For all of our talk about the great things that the law does for intangible innovation and creativity, that same law sometimes has pretty severe material consequences. As another Steve once said — Steve Martin, that is — comedy is not pretty.