It isn’t usually that startup rivals battle in plain view of others, however such is the case with the cell messaging providers supplier Postscript, which took to the Twitterverse earlier this month after receiving a cease-and-desist letter from competitor Attentive.
Attentive’s letter was in response to a shopper case research that Postscript had authored and posted on its web site about vitamin firm BUBS Pure, which stated BUBS Pure left Attentive for Postscript after discovering its listing truly shrinking as a substitute of rising, then battling with the corporate to maneuver its listing off its platform.
Calling out Postscript for “false, deceptive and misleading claims” being made about it in these revealed supplies, Attentive in its letter demanded that Postscript stop posting them.
Requested afterward what’s occurring between the 2 outfits, Attentive, via a spokesperson, responded by way of electronic mail that “Sadly, Postscript has a historical past of false claims and deceitful conduct. We’ve despatched a number of stop and desist letters over time as they’ve made inaccurate claims about Attentive, which they’ve acknowledged and corrected. We’ve additionally introduced a federal lawsuit in January of 2023 in opposition to Postscript for ongoing and willful infringement of our a number of patents for our two-tap cell expertise, which revolutionized manufacturers’ skill so as to add clients to their SMS lists in a compliant means.” (Attentive shared a replica of the criticism with TechCrunch.)
A number of the “beef” between the 2 could appear ticky-tacky to outsiders. For instance, Attentive’s cease-and-desist letter complained in regards to the timeline in Postscript’s advertising, which says that former buyer BUBS Pure was a buyer of Attentive for 3 years when Attentive says BUBs was a buyer for roughly half as lengthy.
In response to Attentive’s letter, Postscript’s co-founder Alex Beller revealed an exasperated-sounding tweet, saying Postscript has heard earlier than from Attentive and calling the corporate a “bully.” He additionally revealed a “response in full” that tried to strike a extra measured tone.
Reads the response: “Postscript takes your accusations severely and gives its substantive response beneath. However it is crucial additionally to notice the broader context wherein Attentive is casting these accusations. Postscript is making positive factors available in the market. It has additionally just lately introduced consideration to a reprehensible follow engaged in by some SMS platforms within the trade: holding a buyer’s proprietary SMS listing hostage to forestall or intervene with the shopper’s try to vary suppliers. Contemplating these circumstances, Attentive’s assertion of more and more weak authorized claims seems aimed toward shoring up current underperformance available in the market and distracting from its personal acts of unfair competitors.”
Russell Weaver, a professor of regulation on the College of Louisville, spoke to TechCrunch about what avenues Attentive has to defend itself in opposition to perceived defamation or slander. One is to sue, which Weaver stated is extra complicated and might usually result in additional scrutiny or protection of the corporate. The opposite is to attempt the cease-and-desist route as Attentive has carried out.
Within the meantime, Postscript’s ways appear to be working. In response to one in all Beller’s tweets on the matter, one Attentive buyer stated he would possibly change distributors. BGC (@Bryan_Clark_) tweeted, “This makes me wish to change from attentive to Postscript. I’m wondering what the ROI on this thread will create for you guys.”
When requested if it did have an effect, Postscript responded by way of electronic mail that it “doubled its ‘win fee’ in opposition to Attentive within the final quarter.”
In the meantime, TechCrunch talked with TJ Ferrera, co-founder of BUBS Naturals, about not seeing that promised pick-up in subscribers. With reference to making a change that in all probability drew extra consideration than he anticipated it might, he stated he has no regrets.
“On one entrance, it’s small gamers that don’t know how you can play this,” Ferrara stated. “On the opposite entrance,” he stated, referring to Attentive, “you could have a 400-pound gorilla that’s holding individuals’s info hostage.”
To that allegation of holding information, when Ferrara requested customized information from his account, Attentive responded with it in six enterprise days, and a subsequent request was answered inside an hour.” As well as, its “insurance policies with its clients clarify that the shopper owns its information. Attentive facilitates the export of subscriber lists upon buyer request and strives to supply them in a well timed method in accordance with our contractual settlement.”