Culture

Elon Musk’s ‘Teslaquila’ Drink Faces Legal Trouble From Mexican Tequila Industry

Elon Musk is one of the most well known entrepreneurs in the world, most notably as the co-founder and CEO of Tesla cars. Now, Musk is about to set his sights on his newest venture as he has trademarked an alcoholic drink dubbed “Teslaquila.” However, Musk is already facing opposition from Mexico’s Tequila Regulatory Council (CRT), which presides over what can legally be considered tequila in the U.S. and Mexico.

“Teslaquila” started as an April Fools joke with Elon Musk but it didn’t take long for him to make that joke a reality.

In October, Tesla trademarked the name “Teslaquila” as a “distilled agave liquor” and “distilled blue agave liquor.” Shortly after Musk tweeted a photo of the bottle, saying it was “coming soon.” The idea might be on hold as the CRT is prepared to take on Musk in a legal battle of who gets to use the word tequila in their product.

Musk has already filed an application with the US Patent and Trademark Office in October to trademark the word “Teslaquila.” The CRT recently released a statement challenging the product on intellectual and geographic grounds.

“If it wants to make Teslaquila viable as a tequila it would have to associate itself with an authorized tequila producer, comply with certain standards and request authorization from Mexico’s Industrial Property Institute,” said the CRT in a statement to Reuters. “Otherwise it would be making unauthorized use of the denomination of origin for tequila.”

What legal standing does the CRT have when it comes to tequila? Turns out, a lot.

The CRT main purpose is to keep regulations and tabs on tequila producers to assure they follow strict production rules. This means the drink must be made in the Mexican states of Guanajuato, Jalisco, Michoacan, Nayarit or Tamaulipas. The main concern is that the proposed name, “Teslaquila,” might confuse and trick people into thinking it’s true tequila. Technically, it wouldn’t be tequila without approval from the CRT. The organization has the right to govern the designation of tequila in both Mexico and the U.S.

If Teslaquila, which has yet to be approved by the U.S. patent office, were to go forward without approval the company could find itself in legal trouble. Both the CRT and the Mexican government could bring up legal issues hindering the company and brand. Manufacturing products in the tequila business is notoriously difficult because the main ingredient agave, is in dangerously short supply.

In his latest Tweet, Musk said “We will fight Big Tequila” which might indicate this is far from over.

Musk isn’t the first high profile name to get into the crowded tequila business. Justin Timberlake, P. Diddy and George Clooney have all gotten into the business. If Tesla goes ahead with its tequila plans without the Mexican authorities’ approval, then it may have to change it’s name to distance itself from tequila.


READ: Cafe Tacvba Greets Refugee Caravan In Mexico City With Support And Music

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This Indigenous Village In Mexico Trains Their Children As Soldiers To Combat Gang Violence

Things That Matter

This Indigenous Village In Mexico Trains Their Children As Soldiers To Combat Gang Violence

via Getty Images

In the town of Ayahualtempa, Mexico, in the state of Guerrero, reporters see a shocking image whenever they visit. Children armed with guns, trained to defend themselves. The disturbing scene is meant to be shocking. The village of Ayahualtempa is under constant attack. A prominent heroin “corridor”, they are the victims of violence and carnage at the hands of gangsters and the cartel.

In order to gain the Mexican government’s attention, the Ayahualtempa villagers dress their children up as soldiers. Then, they invite the media in.

Ayahualtempa
via Getty Images

When reporters arrive, the children of Ayahualtempa dutifully line up and put on a performance. They march, they show how they would shoot a gun from one knee, or from flat on their bellies. They tell reporters that their mock-violent performance is “so the president sees us and helps us,” as a 12-year-old child named Valentín told the Associated Press.

Because the Mexican government doesn’t protect Ayahualtempa, the display of child soldiers is a form of protest for the small indigenous village. The people of this remote region of Guerrero want protection from the National Guard, and financial help for widows and orphans who have been made so from organized crime.

The villagers don’t trust local authorities, and for good reason. Guerrera is the Mexican state in which 43 teaching students were abducted and killed in an event that is known as the “Iguala mass kidnapping”. Authorities arrested 80 suspects in connection to the event. 44 of them were police officers, working in conjunction with a network of cartels.

Although the demonstrations function largely as a publicity stunt, violence is very much a part of these children’s lives.

via Getty Images

Parents train their children to walk to school with loaded guns, ready to defend themselves against violent gangsters.

The attention-grabbing antics have, to some extent, worked. On one occasion, the government donated some housing material. On another, benefactors gave the community’s orphans and widows scholarships and houses. But as soon as the periodic media storms die down, the federal government continues pretending Ayahualtempa doesn’t exist.

The hypocrisy of the government’s response is frustrating to many. “We’ve normalized that these children don’t eat, are illiterate, are farm workers. We’re used to the Indians dying young, but, ‘How dare they arm them!’” said local human rights activist Abel Barrera to the AP, with a heavy dose of sarcasm.

As for now, until the government moves to protect the community, they say they will continue their demonstrations. “They see that the issue of the children is effective for making people take notice and they think: If that’s what works, we’ll have to keep doing it,” said Barrera.

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Spanish Voiceover Actress For Jessie From Pokémon Dies And Fans Mourn

Entertainment

Spanish Voiceover Actress For Jessie From Pokémon Dies And Fans Mourn

Pokémon fans in Latin America are mourning the death of Diana Pérez, the Spanish-language voice of Jessie of Pokémon’s Team Rocket. The voice actress has been voicing the character since 1997.

Diana Pérez, the voice actress of Team Rocket’s Jessie, died at 51.

Lalo Garza, a famed voice actor in Mexico, confirmed the death of the Pokémon voice actress.

“Rest in peace Diana Pérez, a strong, cultured, intelligent, and very talented woman. You are good now, friend. Nothing hurts anymore. Have a good trip,” reads the tweet.

Pérez has been a staple in the Spanish-language Pokémon fandom for decades.

Pérez was more than just he voice of Jessie. The voice actress was the voice of multiple anime characters including Luffy in One Piece and Kagura in Inuyasha. In recent years, Pérez had started branching out to directing, producing, and other branches in the entertainment industry.

Pérez’s death is being mourned by Pokémon fans outside of the Spanish-language fandom.

Sarah Natochenny is the English voice of Ash Ketchum in the Pokémon series, Jessie’s mortal enemy. The death of Pérez has impacted the larger Pokémon community. Pérez was a pivotal part of the Latin American Pokémon community for decades and her loss has devastated fans.

Descansa en paz, Diana.

There have been no plans announced for a replacement to voice Team Rocket’s Jessie. No official cause of death has been released either. Our hearts and thoughts go out to Pérez’s family and the greater Pokémon community mourning her passing.

READ: I Was Today Years Old When I Found Out This Mexican Pokémon

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