An Ohio man is responding to a lawsuit filed by Best Buy over his use of the company's Geek Squad name for his technical support business, the Star Tribune reports.
Nathaniel Parsons, 41, of Sheffield Lake, Ohio, was sued by the Richfield-based retailer in Minneapolis federal court this week after being accused of trademark infringement and cybersquatting.
According to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), cybersquatting is "generally bad faith registration of another's trademark in a domain name."
Parsons owns the websites affordablegeeksquad.com and cheapgeeksquad.com. Best Buy is seeking a court order to stop Parsons from using the names of the websites. The company is also asking for $200,000 in damages.
The man told the Star Tribune in a phone interview that his sites "may not be legal by the way the law is written, but I’m not confusing their customers. My website colors and layout are totally different from Geek Squad's."
Best Buy spokesman Jeff Shelman told the paper that the company asked Parsons to stop using the names, and he refused. Shelman said the suit was filed as a last resort.
Parsons told the Star Tribune that he deserves a break because he's helping people who can't afford the real Geek Squad.
He also defended the use of the Geek Squad name in a post on his websites, titled "Censored by Best Buy (Geek Squad) and Corporate America."
The man said in the post that he would continue to exercise his freedom of speech rights against Best Buy and Geek Squad, and has started a social media campaign against them.
Parsons also posted a link to the the lawsuit on his sites.