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While we're on subject of Minecraft, word just got out that a Swedish law firm, representing publisher and developer Bethesda Softworks, is suing the creators of the popular open-world game.
It appears that this suit is not related to Minecraft (a product still in not completed, by the way). Instead, it concerns the company's next project, entitled Scrolls. Ah, I think I already see the master-plan of some lame-ass lawyer, who thinks this is the perfect time to grab some cash quickly and easily. Naturally, the Swedish law firm started legal action, insisting that the Minecraft devs should alter the title of their new project, so that the title doesn't contain the word "scrolls." (sigh)
Here's the word from Marcus Persson, the creator of Minecraft:
About half a year ago, our lawyers recommended us to register "Minecraft" as a trademark, so we did. I had voted against it initially, but we did it anyway. Better safe than sorry, and all that. At the same time, we also applied for "Scrolls", the new game we're working on. We knew of no similarly named games, and we had even googled it to make sure. I'm not even sure if you CAN trademark individual words, like "Scrolls", but we sent in the application anyway.
(Disclosure: We've enforced the trademark for Minecraft once, when there was a minecraft clone on iOS, using our name. People were emailing me saying our iOS version was buggy and bad, so we asked them to change the name of their game, and they did.)
A while later, out of the blue, we got contacted by Bethesda's lawyers. They wanted to know more about the "Scrolls" trademark we were applying for, and claimed it conflicted with their existing trademark "The Elder Scrolls". I agree that the word "Scrolls" is part of that trademark, but as a gamer, I have never ever considered that series of (very good) role playing games to be about scrolls in any way, nor was that ever the focal point of neither their marketing nor the public image.
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