The Pom Wonderful company, a purveyor of pomegranate juices, can sue Coca-Cola for marketing a competing "Pomegranate Blueberry" juice that is 0.3 percent pomegranate juice and 0.2 percent blueberry juice, the Supreme Court ruled today. From the court's decision:
POM competes in the pomegranate-blueberry juice market with the Coca-Cola Company. Coca-Cola, underits Minute Maid brand, created a juice blend containing 99.4% apple and grape juices, 0.3% pomegranate juice, 0.2% blueberry juice, and 0.1% raspberry juice. Despite the minuscule amount of pomegranate and blueberry juices in the blend, the front label of the Coca-Cola product displays the words “pomegranate blueberry” in all capital letters, on two separate lines. Below those words, Coca-Cola placed the phrase “flavored blend of 5 juices” in much smaller type.
The court wasn't actually deciding whether the advertising was misleading—though during oral arguments the consensus seemed to be that it was—but whether the lack of federal regulatory action against Coca-Cola over the label meant that the government had implicitly approved it, thus precluding Pom's suit. Eight of the Court's juice-tices (hahahahaha) ruled unanimously that Pom could sue. (Stephen Breyer recused himself. Coverage of the case did not make clear why he did so.)
Correction, June 12, 2014: This post originally stated in error that nine Court justices ruled in Pom's favor. The number was eight because of Stephen Breyer's recusal.
TODAY IN SLATE
The World’s Politest Protesters
The Occupy Central demonstrators are courteous. That’s actually what makes them so dangerous.
The Religious Right Is Not Happy With Republicans
The Feds Have Declared War on Encryption—and the New Privacy Measures From Apple and Google
The One Fact About Ebola That Should Calm You
It spreads slowly.
These “Dark” Lego Masterpieces Are Delightful and Evocative
Black people’s disdain for “proper English” and academic achievement is a myth.