Few Things More Pathetic Than an Argument Between the Already Dead and the Dying
SunRocket may be dead and buried, but like the corpses in Sam Raimi’s “Evil Dead,” there’s a bit of life left in it yet. Sherwood Partners, the company presiding over the dissolution of SunRocket’s assets, sued Vonage last week, accusing the Internet telephony outfit of wrongfully using the SunRocket subscriber list to solicit new customers.
The suit claims Vonage acquired the list during confidential acquisition talks between the two companies and has done SunRocket “irreparable harm and injury” by using it without permission. Vonage, for its part, acknowledges its confidentiality agreement with SunRocket but claims it legitimately purchased the list from a third-party broker. “We believe the suit lacks merit,” Vonage spokesman Charles Sahner told the Register. “We obtained a VOIP subscriber list through an established marketing list broker. We were assured that the data was legally obtained and could be used without violating anyone’s proprietary rights.”
If that’s truly the case, the deal worked out quite nicely for Vonage, which likes to fancy itself the belle of the VOIP ball despite its lousy financials and semi-dire legal straits. In the two days after SunRocket went belly-up, Vonage signed up 11,000 new subscribers–many of them old SunRocket customers. “We were the leader from the very beginning and we have that critical mass and the scale,” Sahner said back in July. “We helped put (SunRocket) out of business. They had a cheap product and they couldn’t compete.”