You would think that some companies may have better things to do than troll eBay and sending takedown notices for custom Transformers figures. You would think first that Hasbro would be the ones to try and shut things down, but how about a tobacco company? Phillip Morris USA is such a company, as they do not take lightly the great crime of making a figure that resembles the classic Marlboro-sponsored race cars of the 70s and 80s. Such is the case today for Gunpla reviewer and mecha enthusiast, Vegeta8259.
Listed on his eBay auction was a custom of Wheeljack, painted to look like the Series 5 Stratos Marlboro-sponsored race car. In response to the listing, Phillip Morris USA asked for eBay to remove the listing as it infringed on their copyrights, and eBay complied. The custom itself is based off the actual release of the original Diaclone (toy line on which Hasbro based the Transformers franchise on) figure, on which the name was changed to Marlboor to try and skirt around the legal issue, which obviously isn't enough to satisfy Phillip Morris today.
I can understand why Phillip Morris would be upset with the custom, especially given the "Children's toy with cigarette company OH NO," but it just seems just a tad ridiculous for a company to actively monitor eBay to be on watch for custom Transformers. What is even more ludicrous about it is that the company is only going after the custom Marlboor figures and leaving alone the original Diaclone toys.
Putting this all into perspective, a large conglomerate is actively pursing custom Transformers toys on eBay featuring its deco but not the ones made by an actual company. I need a smoke after processing this.
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