Buckyballs® Manufacturer Calls Consumer Product Safety Commission Complaint "Arbitrary, Capricious and Wholly Without Merit"

Aug 14, 2012, 14:15 ET from Maxfield and Oberton

NEW YORK, Aug. 14, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Maxfield & Oberton (M&O), the manufacturers of Buckyballs® and Buckycubes®, formally responded today to the Consumer Product Safety Commission's (CPSC) administrative complaint, terming it arbitrary, capricious and wholly without merit. The CPSC's lawsuit seeks, in essence, to shut down M&O by requiring it to halt sales of its primary products, Buckyballs® and Buckycubes®, and to recall all existing products in consumers' hands. No company could withstand that type of action, and especially not a small one like M&O.

In its response to the Complaint, M&O made the following points:

  • M&O denies all allegations that its products are defective or create any unreasonable risk. In fact, we have gone out of our way to minimize any risk through our CPSC-reviewed safety program.
  • There is no applicable rule, regulation, standard or ban with which M&O has failed to comply. CPSC seems intent on creating a new rule to ban our product and put us out of business.
  • The complaint is arbitrary and capricious because it is not based on any reasonable assessment of risk and is clearly inconsistent with the CPSC's own mandatory standards. There are so many truly risky products that the CPSC allows to be marketed with warning labels that we are at a loss to understand how they assess relative risk among the products they oversee.
  • The CPSC itself contributed to the issue by failing to take action against online retailers, as requested repeatedly by M&O, to force them to cease offering ours and similar products for sale to or use by children under 14. After our direct efforts with these retailers were rebuffed, we appealed to the CPSC to take action and they did not.
  • The CPSC staff did not fairly and adequately consider, and the Commissioners may not have been made fully aware of, a comprehensive voluntary corrective action plan which Maxfield and Oberton submitted, at the request of the CPSC staff, the day immediately preceding the CPSC staff's filing of its Complaint. Not only that, but the CPSC staff subsequently included elements of Maxfield and Oberton's voluntary corrective action plan in the CPSC staff's Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for a Safety Standard for Magnet Sets, dated August 8, 2012.

In summary, M&O believes the CPSC's rush to judgment is both unfair and unprecedented and Maxfield & Oberton will mount a vigorous defense.

"We are more emboldened than ever to continue fighting this egregious action, and today have posted nearly 2,500 comments related to this proposed ban," said Craig Zucker, Founder and CEO of Maxfield and Oberton. "We have collected some of the thousands of comments that are being posted online and sent to us, as well as many that were sent directly to the CPSC.  We have posted them unfiltered and you will note that almost 99% of these are in favor of our efforts and against taking away this product that is marketed to and enjoyed by millions of adults."

Buckyballs® and Buckycubes™ are the number one selling brand names in high-powered magnets - recently called America's "fave desk accessory" by the Washington Post (July 13, 2012), and named "the next big thing in cubicle fidgeting" by New York magazine (July 16-23, 2012). For more information visit SaveOurBalls.net and GetBuckyballs.com. Or visit us on Facebook or Twitter.



CONTACT: Andrew Frank (212-935-0210)

SOURCE Maxfield and Oberton