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Twitter account alerting Publix sub sales is back after grocery chain objects

Publix Sub
Posted at 1:15 PM, Apr 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-29 13:16:03-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — The popular Twitter account that alerts people when Publix subs are on sale is back!

Bryan Dickey, the founder of @PubSubs_on_sale says he is resuming posting updates and keeping his fingers crossed that the grocery chain giant doesn’t sue him, as threatened.

"I created the account in January 2017, shortly after the 2016 Presidential election was wrapping up," Dickey said in a released statement. "The Internet was polluted with hate and disagreement at the time, and I felt compelled to do something positive. I created the account with the intention of spreading love and connecting the internet through positivity. Growing up in Florida, I knew there was one thing that connected all people- regardless of political affiliation, race, religion or gender….Publix subs."

Dickey said in August 2020, he received a cease and desist order from an attorney representing Publix Super Markets, Inc. and Publix Asset Management Company (collectively, “Publix”) for selling, what was referred to as, "unauthorized Publix-branded merchandise."

In February 2021, Dickey says he received another cease and desist order from an attorney representing Publix.

"The cease and desist cited an infringement of Publix’s intellectual property rights related to the “Pub Sub VIP Club” text program that was launched in January of 2021," DIckey stated. "I amicably complied with the request and ended the “Pub Sub VIP Club” text program."

Dickey acknowledged he became greedy after realizing the value of the service he built, which included a related text-messaging feature and sales of Publix subs-branded merchandise.

He said Publix did not demand that he shut down the social media account, just two related businesses that were profitable for him. Dickey said last year he made $5,000 and no longer intends to profit from notifying Publix customers about sub-sales.

Dickey said he'll “see what happens” as he keeps updating the Twitter account, which has nearly 40,000 followers. That happened after an outpouring of support on social media and backlash towards Publix after details of a trademark showdown emerged earlier this week.

“I’ve decided that I’m not going to let not making money get in the way of me living out that mission statement of bringing joy to the internet and connecting people through Publix subs,” Dickey said in his statement.

The Twitter account had been silent since March 11 but it showed signs of renewed life after this week’s news reports and expressions of public support.

Dickey's full, released statement is below:

"Here’s what’s happening:

On January 26, 2017, the @PubSubs_On_Sale account was born with one Tweet - “Yes.”

Over the past four years, the online community around “Are Publix Chicken Tender Subs on Sale?” has grown through the love, support and shared connections of thousands of fans of Publix’s deli subs- larger than I’ve ever expected. The Twitter account was created with one goal: to share weekly Publix sub-sale updates.

And this came with a deeper mission. I created the account in January 2017, shortly after the 2016 Presidential election was wrapping up. The Internet was polluted with hate and disagreement at the time, and I felt compelled to do something positive. I created the account with the intention of spreading love and connecting the internet through positivity. Growing up in Florida, I knew there was one thing that connected all people- regardless of political affiliation, race, religion or gender….Publix subs.

When we're standing in line at our local Publix deli, we're all the same. That's the connection and feeling that I wanted this account to bring to the internet.

As the account grew over time, I recognized opportunities to generate a profit without challenging the integrity of the goal and mission. In the past year, I started to prioritize profit over purpose. With money, came problems.

In August 2020, I received a cease and desist request from an Attorney representing Publix Super Markets, Inc. and Publix Asset Management Company (collectively, “Publix”) for selling, what the Attorney referred to as, unauthorized Publix-branded merchandise. I amicably complied with the request to stop selling the merchandise.

In February 2021, I received another cease and desist request from an Attorney representing Publix. The cease and desist cited an infringement of Publix’s intellectual property rights related to the “Pub Sub VIP Club” text program that was launched in January of 2021. I amicably complied with the request and ended the “Pub Sub VIP Club” text program.

After two cease and desists, I was at a crossroads with how I wanted to proceed with publishing weekly sub-sale updates. I decided to go silent on the @pubsubs_on_sale accounts in March 2021.

I felt discouraged, unappreciated and silenced by a corporation that I felt I was providing value for.

Over the past 6 weeks of silence, I’ve heard your support, I’ve felt your love. Today, I’m deciding to break that silence.

I’ve reflected on that very goal and mission I set when I sent that first Tweet in January 2017. I recognize that creating a medium of shared connection between friends, family and strangers on the Internet will always return more to the world, than any profit that can be generated for my personal gain.

I don’t know what the future holds. I can’t foresee how the billion-dollar corporation in Lakeland, FL responds to this. But for now, I will continue to further the goal and mission of why this account was created.

Whether you believe in the bigger mission, or just love Publix subs, thank you for your support over the past 4 years. My ask is that you continue to share these sales, and use them as a medium to connect with those in your community, both online and offline.

With love,

Bryan Dickey
Creator, “Are Publix Chicken Tender Subs on Sale?” (@pubsubs_on_sale)
And, yes.Publix Chicken Tender subs are $6.99 (4/29-5/5)."