MGM shuts down volunteer "Rocky" charity run



Christ, way too many fucking assholes!


Was there any communication from the charity to MGM prior to this? If the charity didn’t even send them an e-mail, then they deserve the shutdown.

I’m sick of charities pretending that they are the victims when they haven’t even done the common courtesy of contacting the property owner. If the property owner says no, then complain. But don’t go to the media and pretend the evil corporation is oppressing you if you blindsided them with your action.

I’d hardly call it a charity, and more just a thing that happened. People don’t even pay money or register.


MGM has seen its success and has partnered with a for-profit company to launch a non-charitable version

Per the Rocky Run website, they do have a charitable beneficiary: Special Olympics Philadelphia. How much and what percentage of profits aren’t stated though (as is often the case, unfortunately).

It is really crappy how a lot of for-profit races throw a nominal donation in their materials to make it look like a non-profit race.

1 Like

Stay classy, MGM.


The only thing at stake here is the name (and any assorted imaging from the movie), since I don’t believe you can copyright a route.

Call it the Rocky Road Run and put pictures of ice cream on all your promotional materials and say you’re doing it to work off extra calories from ice cream.

1 Like


I wonder if they could find a picture of Stallone eating ice cream.


Yeah, I’m sick of small groups of people who live near the location where a famous movie was shot deciding to organize something for charity that refers back to the film as well.

I mean, when these people said, “Hey, we live near where the guy* did his run in the movie, let’s do that run,” “Yeah, we might as well collect something for charity while we’re at it.” Why didn’t think think about how MGM deserved to be making money off of the thing they decided to do? I’m pretty sure MGM essentially owns that tract of land, given the fact that they shot a movie there once. Plus there’s the name! There is no way someone should mention a movie without paying the people who made it money.

Can’t we think of the real victims - those who’s letter-of-the-law right to profit has been ignored?

* You’ll notice I didn’t actually say the guy’s name, because that would be wrong unless I paid MGM for the right to do so, and I don’t quite know what mechanism I should pay them through. Actual people who have that name in real life must owe MGM a lot of money.


There you go:


Oh, the poor charity. A simple email would have broken their little fingers.

Stupidity is not an excuse. I donate exclusively to the Red Cross/Red Crescent because they are smart enough not to fuck this shit up.

Here, let me write it for you:

Dear MGM,

Are you using [this idea]? If not, we’d like to use it for our charity thingy. Let us know if you can accommodate us or if there are any pre-existing conflicts. Thanks.


A competent charity that doesn’t piss on everyone

Contrast this with


Pretty sure that’s not a Rambo, dude…

1 Like

And contrast your examples to what the actual person who organized it was quoted as saying in the article:

“I can’t be negative about this,” she says. “My mom was like, ‘How cool is it that you did something that got a cease-and-desist?’”

So you’ve fabricated a caricature of a person screaming like a little kid to justify getting angry that a small group of people who did not and never intended to profit decided to have a small event for charity that invoked the name of a movie.

I am pretty far from convinced that MGM even has any legal right to send this. Anyone is allowed to run that route and anyone is allowed, while doing so, to remark upon or even advertise that it is the same route as the one Rocky ran in the movie.

This is on par with someone holding a Rocky Horror Picture Show themed hallowe’en party and collect voluntary donations for a food bank at the door. Does that warrant a letter to lawyers first?

This is on par with someone offering a tour of a city that mentions what movies were filmed in what locations. Do they owe royalties to the makers of all of those films?

Rocky was filmed in Philadelphia, that does not give MGM any kind of permanent rights over the city or the people in it. And having a copyright on a piece of media doesn’t let you control the way other people mention it or reference it - only the way other people reproduce it.

What I’m sick of is people with lots of money using legal threats to bully people without money because they know the people without money can’t take it court. Another thing I am sick of is people imagining that having copyright over a piece of media gives carte blanche to any absurd action so long as that piece of media is peripherally related.


You sound very angry, but entirely at the wrong people. Have you considered a career in law enforcement?


I think it’s not really about asking for permission. Any corporate lawyer will tell you you need permission for just about anything. It looks bad because MGM essentially used their perceived IP to “steal” a good idea. You think if this “Rocky” run had never existed, that MGM would have done it? Remember ALS and the “ice bucket” copyright? I think this should be under fair use.

Just to be clear Humbabella, the lower quote is you (and the other people who are kneejerk reacting).

Well, it’s good that you’re being entirely clear and ensuring there’s no confusion on how your insulting uncivil response was to be read. Any response to the actual meat of the objection, ie, there’s no legitimate intellectual property to infringe here?


I’ve already stated it. And it wasn’t an insult, it was an acknowledgement that the kneejerk reaction is by people who refuse to acknowledge that a simple e-mail could have de-conflicted this situation. You and every other reply to my post have not given any reasonable explanation why this wasn’t done. There are tons of cease-and-desist letters that warrant our concern. But when the receiver hasn’t even done the simplest of groundwork, I can’t feel much pity for them. When they haven’t done this groundwork, it certainly doesn’t deserve the “MGM is evil” flip-out party you are having right now.

MGM was teetering on the brink of bankruptcy and could barely scrape together the money for the last Bond film, if I recall correctly. It is at least vaguely understandable that they would want to be cautious when it comes to use of their IP.

(Of course, said Bond film did end up being the most successful film in the franchise ever.)