DOCUMENT: Celebrity, Crime

Victoria's Secret Legal Threat For TSG

A couple of weeks ago, TSG reproduced portions of the employee dress code for Victoria's Secret. While not the greatest document in the world, we thought it was still rather amusing. But, as you may have read in the New York Post or Jeannette Walls' MSNBC column, the panty peddlers are threatening us with legal action over our reporting. They not only want us to give up our source, but the company's lawyers want the "Dress for Success" document removed from TSG because it is an "internal document of the company, subject to confidentiality agreements."

Below you'll find a copy of the e-mail we received June 28 from lawyer Frank J. Colucci. Hey, Victoria: Bring it, don't sing it. Your Miracle Bras and flyaway babydolls don't scare TSG.





NEW YORK, NEW YORK 10022-6018

TELEPHONE (212) 935-5700 FACSIMILE (212) 935-5728 [email protected]

June 27, 2000


Mr. Daniel Green The Smoking Gun P.O. Box 1341 Cooper Station New York, New York 10276

Re: Victoria's Secret/The Smoking Gun Our File D68-188

Dear Mr. Green:

We are Patent, Trademark and Copyright Counsel to V Secret Catalogue, Inc., Victoria's Secret Stores, Inc. and Victoria's Secret Catalogue, LLC (collectively 'Victoria's Secret').

Victoria's Secret owns and operates over 800 VICTORIA'S SECRET retail stores throughout the United States as well as distributes the well-known VICTORIA'S SECRET catalog nationwide.

In addition, Victoria's Secret is the owner of the registered trademark and service mark VICTORIA'S SECRET in the United States and in numerous countries throughout the world. The VICTORIA'S SECRET name and mark has acquired widespread public recognition and goodwill and is an important and valuable asset of our clients.

Recently it has come to Victoria's Secret's attention that The Smoking Gun has reproduced the Victoria's Secret 'Dress for Success' guide on its website located at The Victoria's Secret 'Dress for Success' guide is an internal document of the company, subject to confidentiality agreements. In addition, this guide constitutes copyrightable subject matter and was reproduced without the authorization or permission of Victoria's Secret in violation of the Federal Copyright Law.

Further, The Smoking Gun is using the words 'Bra Salon', 'Tyra' and 'Heidi' as hyperlinks to the Victoria's Secret website,, all without Victoria's Secret's permission or consent. Accordingly, we demand that The Smoking Gun provide us with its source of the Victoria's Secret 'Dress for Success' guide and remove all infringing material from its website immediately. Please be advised that if we do not receive a response from you by Friday, June 30, 2000, we shall take all appropriate further action to protect Victoria's Secret's rights. We trust that such action will be unnecessary and that The Smoking Gun will voluntarily comply with our demands.

Sincerely yours,


Frank J. Colucci FJC/KMM