Also Not The 9 O'Clock News

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Sudanna

Re: Also Not The 9 O'Clock News

Postby Sudanna » Fri May 12, 2017 6:07 pm

You can call companies names like "douchebags" and "assholes" and refer to their executives as "massive douches", if you want, but at the end of the day, trademark law is what it is.


laws that enable jackassery do not absorb or excuse the jackassery of jackasses :p
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Daemian Lucifer

Re: Also Not The 9 O'Clock News

Postby Daemian Lucifer » Fri May 12, 2017 6:39 pm

Retsam wrote:Because, yes, any two drinks probably would qualify for "reasonable confusion". I don't think I could make a "Monster coffee roast" and say that it's not infringing the Monster energy drink trademark, just because one is a soda and the other is a coffee, even though any reasonable person knows the difference between soda and coffee.


How about if I made pepsi cola.Would you say that infringes the coca cola trademark?Or how about if I made a video sharing site redtube.Would you say that infringes youtubes trademark?Yet a brief search of those does not reveal any trademark disputes.If there were any(which Im surprised there dont seem to be),they are buried deep,and obviously did not work.So I dont buy that its just how trademark law works.
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Thomas

Re: Also Not The 9 O'Clock News

Postby Thomas » Fri May 12, 2017 7:12 pm

I think the coffee example might be infringement. The issue isn't that someone thinks the Monster Coffee is the same thing as Monster Energy Drink, it's that they think the Monster Coffee is made by the same people who make Monster Energy drink. If it's really bad coffee then Monster the company might suffer from the association, and if Monster wanted to expand into the coffee market they'd be unable to bring their brand with them. I don't think those are unreasonable rights to protect.

Like all things, you'd have to settle it in court to be sure. Trademarks apply to "Identical goods" ie two energy drink products, but also "similar goods" and deciding what counts as similar goods is probably tricky, it depends on the likelihood of the goods being confused, on the likelihood of people thinking they can from the same company, how similar the names are and how famous the names are. For example, it was decided that trying to Cannon VHS tapes infringed on the trademark of Canon selling camcorders.

Given how famous Monster is, and that there's already some sort of connection between coffee and energy drinks, I think people would be afraid of trying to make Monster Coffee.

So I think the Prey example is completely fair game. Imagine if Prey for the Gods became the next DayZ indie wonder hit and everyone knew its name. And then both they and Zenimax tried to release a spin-off game, a Mariokart/Dead or Alive Beach Volleyball style spin-off, completely in a different genre. Both have worked hard to earn their reputation and deserve the brand recognition to help the spin-off be successful, but the public are now unsure of which brand the PreyKart game is from. The way to avoid that is to make sure no game gets big with the name 'Prey'.

I'm sure the case wouldn't get thrown out because the games are different genre's. That's way too similar. But I think it might fail because "Prey" is just a really generic term and the Prey videogame brand is currently not very well known.
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In Youtubes case, if they'd make a super successful Twitch style spin-off called "LiveTube", they probably could have won against someone starting a RedTube site. But since they didn't want to expand into the porn industry (under the same brand name), and they didn't want to make 'Tube' a thing, I guess they didn't bother.

I'm guessing "Cola" was becoming a generic term before Coca Cola was famous. Even if it wasn't "Cola" has hit generic status now and they wouldn't be able to defend it - that's why "Hoover" isn't a trademark in the UK, we call all vacuum cleaners hoovers, so Hoover lost the right to say their name was distinctive. Google are really scared this will happen to them, so Google never talks about "Googling" thing, they talk about "Internet searching"

EDIT: I can't find anything that tells me when "Cola" became the name for coca flavoured beverages, but Pepsi-Cola as a name is super old (pre 20th century), so maybe trademark law wasn't as developed back then. It wouldn't matter if it developed later because by then "Pepsi-Cola" would have it's own significance as a brand.

EDIT EDIT: Still nothing, but it's worth noting that I have now read that Coca-Cola are supposed to be very aggressive with their branding and even trademarked the shape of their bottles successfully (and the font of their logo).
Last edited by Thomas on Fri May 12, 2017 7:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Trix2000
Location: California

Re: Also Not The 9 O'Clock News

Postby Trix2000 » Fri May 12, 2017 7:29 pm

Another big example would be Kleenex.

I actually had a relative who worked for another competing company and they were VERY adamant about calling their product 'facial tissue'.
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Daemian Lucifer

Re: Also Not The 9 O'Clock News

Postby Daemian Lucifer » Fri May 12, 2017 7:52 pm

Thomas wrote:So I think the Prey example is completely fair game. Imagine if Prey for the Gods became the next DayZ indie wonder hit and everyone knew its name.


No need to imagine when we have warcraft/starcraft and minecraft.And its not like blizzard does not sue small potatoes,they did shut down a bunch of stuff that they deemed infringing to their stuff(like those wow servers).

Thomas wrote:I'm guessing "Cola" was becoming a generic term before Coca Cola was famous.


Exactly how prey and scrolls are generic words that already have defined meanings outside of video games.
Steve C

Re: Also Not The 9 O'Clock News

Postby Steve C » Fri May 12, 2017 11:36 pm

Thomas wrote:Google are really scared this will happen to them, so Google never talks about "Googling" thing, they talk about "Internet searching".
Google isn't worried about that *anymore* as they lost that battle a while ago. However that is a separate element of trademark law. It has nothing to do with this nonsense with Prey vs Praey.
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Thomas

Re: Also Not The 9 O'Clock News

Postby Thomas » Sat May 13, 2017 4:10 pm

Daemian Lucifer wrote:Exactly how prey and scrolls are generic words that already have defined meanings outside of video games.

That's not what genericised means in this context, but any way that is why Prey (and Scrolls to a lesser extent) would probably be able to win an actual dispute, it's a totally normal word and hearing it in a full sentence title wouldn't make anyone connect it with Prey. Especially since Prey itself isn't a well established franchise. The videogame genre stuff not so much.

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Also Google have not lost the battle for Google becoming genericised, which is fairly obvious because you don't have other search engines setting themselves up as "Duck duck google" or whatever. Well at least the last court case on it I found was 2014 where Google managed to scrape a win, has it happened more recently?

EDIT: As a fun example of the shenanigans Google has been up to, they put pressure on Merriam-Webster which led to the dictionary defining google [lowercase] as "to use the Google search engine to obtain information on the Internet". I think Microsoft are actually accidentally helping Google out by trying to make "Binging" a thing
Steve C

Re: Also Not The 9 O'Clock News

Postby Steve C » Sat May 13, 2017 8:00 pm

I stand corrected. Though I can imagine why I thought so with headlines like: "Court said term was still insufficiently "generic" to void protection." I read that wrong the first 3 times before I caught the convoluted double-negative.
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ecto_stantz_tial

Re: Also Not The 9 O'Clock News

Postby ecto_stantz_tial » Sat May 13, 2017 11:09 pm

If I'm not late to the party, it seems Alan Wake is being pulled from "shelves" due to music licensing BS. On sale on both Steam, and GOG.com, I'm sure as well as other places, before it's no longer available for sale. Not that I love the game by any means, but this sucks. Who's ready to burn some film role so we can make space in the storage room, eh?
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Daemian Lucifer

Re: Also Not The 9 O'Clock News

Postby Daemian Lucifer » Sat May 13, 2017 11:28 pm

Wait,what?....Since when does licensing work like that?That would be akin to all of the older spiderman movies being pulled from shelves now that marvel got him back.

While I wouldnt recommend the base game to anyone,the dlcs were actually good.Definitely worth a purchase.
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Ringwraith

Re: Also Not The 9 O'Clock News

Postby Ringwraith » Sun May 14, 2017 1:36 am

American Nightmare is not affected by this, by the way.

It's that all the musical licenses weren't perpetual I would imagine, therefore as they're "selling" the music in a sense as it's in something else that's sold, it'll not able to be sold when they expire.

These things happen, when Capcom lost the rights to Marvel characters in video games, Marvel vs Capcom 3 was pulled from digital storefronts.
They later got it back (as they're making a new MvC game) so it was reinstated, but for quite some time you simply could not buy it digitally.
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Supahewok

Re: Also Not The 9 O'Clock News

Postby Supahewok » Sat May 20, 2017 4:03 pm

Daemian Lucifer wrote:Wait,what?....Since when does licensing work like that?That would be akin to all of the older spiderman movies being pulled from shelves now that marvel got him back.


That could actually happen, depending on the exact wording of the license and if using Spider-Man in that way was a license, but it won't because Sony still holds the Spider-Man movie rights and it was never a license (licenses do not grant ownership, whereas the Spider-Man movie rights means that Sony does own Spider-Man for movies). The MCU Spider-Man is a collaboration between Sony and Marvel.

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