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back to article NatWest sets lawyers on student site

A student finance website which offers summaries of bank accounts available for the feckless unwashed masses has been hit with a copyright infringement claim by NatWest. The bank's hungry lawyers claim this page which summarises NatWest's student offer is infringement of its copyright. The letter claims that 118student.co.uk is …

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[Redacted]

Looks like [Redacted]'s lawyers cant tell the difference from Copyright infringement and fair use.

I suggest that the bank [Redacted] be known from now on know as the [Redacted] Bank of [Redacted] Lawyers.

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Anonymous Coward

Don't worry about it

I made sure the authors of the site had some extra funds to deal with this legal action by clicking on Natwest's pay per click ad on the google adsense blcok at the bottom of the page.

Every little helps, oh wait, can I say that?

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Re: [Redacted]

Except that this is a trademark issue, not a copyright issue. Owning a trademark doesn't prevent other people from using the word, it just prevents them from pretending to be [Redacted] plc. Having looked at that site, there is no way anyone could possibly confuse them with [Redacted] plc.

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Grenade

An easy workaround

Simply refer to them throughout as tw*tnest.

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Headmaster

F

Too many Ts.

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FAIL

Sonds to me...

... like they have a bot looking online ofr references to Natwest, saw that it was a finance page and assumed they were using the NatWest trademark to lure customers in. I can't see howelse this would have come about. Unless people really ARE this stupid.

Thinking back, they did manage to give me a second student account after I already had one with another bank...

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Stop

Having two Bank Accounts isn't illegal

Banks do have a habit of calling it 'Multi-Banking' and inferring that it's illegal or against the rules.

it isn't.

You may open as many Bank Accounts with as many banks as you wish. Even Student accounts.

The reason they don't like you doing is... it makes it much easier to move your business elsewhere

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The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.

It's typically in the terms and conditions that you aren't supposed to have >1 student bank account. ie: >1 interest free overdraft

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FAIL

Close, no cigar

In the terms and conditions of all student bank accounts is usually words to the effect "I don't have any other bank account, student or otherwise". If you sign the account agreement knowing full well that you do have another bank account, then you are fraudulently accessing credit.

I think you will find that breaks quite a few laws, refer to your local beak for more details.

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Pint

Well

I was shitfaced when I opened the account. I was tempted by the free toaster/ £50

They'd run out of toasters so I gopt the money.

Curse you Freshers week!

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Boffin

I hear that the trick is

to apply for a number of student accounts at different banks at (much) the same time, hence when on each application you state that you "don't have another student account" it is true. No applications have actually gone through, no accounts have been opened, hence you don't have another account.... yet.

£50 is never sweeter than when it's for nothing.

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Anonymous Coward

assumptions

"we assume that the Natwest is included on your website to deceive customers into believing they are dealing with Natwest when in fact they are not."

I assume that if I live off the dole long enough, some day Bill Gates will come and give me all of his money for no reason and I can retire early.

It's fun to make assumptions.

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Assumptions

I believe the phrase is when you assume you make an 'Ass of U and me'.

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Assumptions

"When you make an assumption, you make an ass out of you, and umption."

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Grenade

Alternatively...

...assumption is the mother of all fuckups!

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Grenade

"other banks offer better deals"

Is that something Natwest put on their own website?

It should be.

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Joke

Assumption

Isn't that a religous thing?

Are we going to get the fundamentalists in here screaming for their right not to be mocked?

Can we get a cartoon ?

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Bunch of bastards

This doesn't surprise me much.

In this supposed age of posterity, NatWest will happily tell customers £1000 into a £1250 overdraft that they're allowed to extend it to £1500, no problem. Also, they keep asking if I want another credit card.

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and that's bad how?

If you are too dull to be able to refuse something you know you can't pay back, then you don't deserve a bank account.

There was a story a few years back of an American woman who sued a bank claiming she got into so much debt because they gave her a high credit card limit

Bloody hell, the 'blame someone else' culture pisses me off.

Learn some self-responsibility people!

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Paris Hilton

RE: and that's bad how?

It's not a culture, it's a mind set of self centered people who really do think that everyone else is accountable for their actions. It's our culture that alows them to thrive.

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Indeed

Precisely why I declined their offer.

There are people who aren't smart enough to say no, when they should though. Yes, you could argue that these people should have access to credit, but then why does the bank offer it?

The buck ultimately stops with the customer, but banks should be more inclined to sage advice rather than a drive towards sales.

As a little aside, I knew someone who worked in NatWest little while ago. Only once they'd taking the job, were they told that if they didn't make a certain number of sales in a month e.g. sell enough credit cards, new accounts etc. they'd get a reprimand. If that happened three times they got fired.

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FAIL

Ambulance chasing, asshat lawyers!

I wouldn't have looked at that site if they hadn't made such a fuss, etc.....

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Megaphone

Simple Solution

Remove the offending mark and simply put a comment

"sounds like TWATFEST"

should provide copious amounts of win and an unwashed middle finger to the lawyers.

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FAIL

I can't really sympathise with NatWest on this

HOWEVER, I can see why they wouldnt want to be associated with this site. The owner clearly wants to make a little revenue from Google Ad's but this is more likely to be associated with CyberSquatting. He uses keywords from NatWests marketing meaning anyone searching for NatWest could end up on his site first where they then click the link back to what they were looking for in the first place. He gets paid and NatWest suffer. Down the whole site, it's misleading and a waste of space, however NatWest, calm down he is technically helping you get customers!

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Stop

Cybersquatting??

Hmm - you'd have to be a special type of idiot to search for "NatWest" and come up with this site before natwest.com

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FAIL

What for?

"anyone searching for NatWest would end up on his site first"

WTF?????? OK, I just tried Googling "Natwest" and the Natwest Bank site was first hit. No sign of the 118student site on the first page and I couldn't be arsed to look further. Enough to disprove your point.

I had been about to post that no-one could be dumb enough to mistake 118student for a bank's website, but then I came across your post.

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FAIL

Corporate Pillocks!

Yet another example of corporate idiots hassling people who are just trying to help out. There is no way you'd ever think that this is a banks official webpage, it's way more useful!

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FAIL

If it were me...

I'd replace the offending page with Nat*est are useless as a bank, AVOID AT ALL COSTS!! (in large 40pt text) then invite the lawyers and/or executive team to see if the changes meet with their approval. Anyone using the 118student service would then be properly informed.

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JB
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Haha, agreed

Like the guy who changed his name to something like [name of bank] Are A Load Of Moneygrabbing, Evil Bastards, and so had to have that printed on all his cheques and correspondence. Nice one!

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I'd take N--tw--t off

I'd mention that there was a high-street bank whose name could not be mentioned who did not want to be on my website, so anyone looking for some reasonably decent student offers could either go onto the bank's own site (Google it, friends) or take a look at the other listings. I would add that, personally, I would wonder how friendly a bank was to students that didn't want to appear on a website that could only gain them customers, but who was I to step between them and their trademark.

Or, in other words: NatWest, how to shoot own foot.

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Moz
Grenade

Tell it like it is.

I'd take down the page and replace it with "NatWest are a bunch of c***s - avoid them like the plague. This site has no affiliation with NatWest and never will. Bastards." Then include a copy of their missive.

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Grenade

Re: Tell it like it is.

Nope, still using "NatWest" there.

They should try: "The useless, moronic bunch of bum-sucking arsebandits you can find here". With "here" linked to natwest.com.

That should do it. I'd like to see GnatWorst try "You can't link to our landing page without our permission" in court. Ideally I would like to see 'em try, win, set a legal precedent on linking to NatWest and then see their faces as the term "Pyrrhic victory" is explained to them.

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FAIL

Lawyers trying to justify their salaries.....

Simply Ridiculous. No logos or anything else suggesting the web site is trying to suggest it is connected to or an agent of NatWest.

Hey lawyers look, I said it! NATWEST!

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Still got their name wrong

In fact it's WetNast surely?

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disclaimer

Can't he just put a bit of text at the top of the page saying something along the lines of:

"i am not a bank"?

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Might I suggest

"The bank not fit to be named" ?

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FAIL

Just had a look at the site.

Just had a look at the site, and I'm wondering how dumb Natwest thinks people/students are?

Its not in their corportate colours

Its does not use their logo in any way

It has equal guides for other banks, listed on the left.

As this post meets 2 out of 3 of those criteria, I'm eagerly awaiting my C&D so I can have the joyous experience of watching Natwest get laughed out of court (whilst filling my pockets with the change from my countersuit).

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Joke

It doesn't work

I went to the site, but when I enter my online banking password it doesn't log me in. I don't understand. I just want to check my balance. Why do they have to keep changing things?

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FAIL

Customer charter

Nice to see the customer charter for becoming Britain's most helpful bank is being applied: http://www.natwest.com/global/customer-charter.ashx

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FAIL

Reminds me of Viz years ago....

"Left school?

No money?

No job?

Then f**k off.

Natwest the frank bank"

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Megaphone

There is clearly no "confusion"

over any "mark" - it is used for pupose of review.

Natwest (small w) is Not registered by anyone - see http://www.patent.gov.uk/tm/t-find/t-find-text.htm.

The person who wrote the letter may be making a vexatious series of false claims or, attempting to suggest Natwest is (falsely - allegedly) a "mark".

Case history suggests that such f***wit can now make a sentence of "shot, foot,oneself, in"

I west my case!

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Grenade

screw natwest

OK fine - as a student then I'll be sure to NOT consider Natwest now or in the future.

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Paris Hilton

Rules to live by pt1

When it comes to these two a simple substitution is required when you're dealing with them:

Banks = Anal Rapists

Lawyers = Utter Wankers

Therefore you are pre-warned mentally.

Paris because you'd want her to be the bank ...

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Joke

S

She is a kind of bank. The kind used for IVF I think.

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Anonymous Coward

I doubt very much

That NatWest could win either copyright or trade mark claims but they will always try and scare you, after all think of all that tax payers money they'll be wasting if they sue you.

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At least they can now legitimately...

... add

* are a bunch of cunts to students

to the list then :-)

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FAIL

GnatWest

I'd happily review my local (Edinburgh) branch for them. Tried to depost two cheques - £1000 and£100 - a year or so ago. Gel behind the counter needed a calculator to add them together and still got the sum wrong.

Guess they really are an equal opportunity employer and take people on irrespective of numerical aptitude.

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FAIL

Not just their staff that can't add up.

Our local branch has recently replaced 3 counters with 3 deposit/cashpoint machines that can't add up either.

A few months ago I took in 5 cheques to pay into our company account, they totaled something like £5648.23 (I forget the exact amount). I fed the cheques into the machine, and it attempted to read the values on them, it got 4 right and 1 wrong, so I had to manually enter the value for that cheque. It came up with a total of £5648.22 on the screen. That wasn't the figure I had so I thought it had read another cheque wrong by £0.01, and rejected the total at which point it ejected the cheques and the paying in slip.

I repeated the operation, this time paying careful attention to the values of each cheque and again it came up 1p short.

I went up to the help desk and spoke to one of the senior cashiers who was there, she checked my adding up and agreed with my figure. So I got her to come over to the machine and try it. She got exactly the same result as I had earlier.

I was told that even though the machine was showing the wrong figure, our account would be correctly credited as all the deposits were manually checked anyway. So, at that point we decided to print a receipt for the deposit, and the receipt actually had the correct figure on it.

My boss who normally does the bank deposits has a similar problem with the machine displaying and printing different figures twice since then.

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Bloody hell

sounds like, though the numbers are being stored in a sensible format and transactions go through in a sensible format, the UI is converting them into floating-point to add up for the confirmation. That's serious fail

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