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Thursday, June 10, 2010

Is Palladium's Rifts Trademark Legit?


This is just a quick hit as I write tomorrow's blog post. This bit of information doesn't really fit in with the rest of the article, but I felt like this was an important distinction.

When I read Palladium's Rifts trademark as it applies to movies, which you can read here, I started to wonder if it really was intended to cover a video game, or simply a utility such as the old Rifts Game Master Companion (RGMC), which allegedly was the basis for the trademark in the first place in 1995. The trademark reads:
FOR: COMPUTER GAME SOFTWARE AND COMPUTER GAME PROGRAMS CONTAINING ROLE PLAYING GAMES INVOLVING SCIENCE FICTION OR FANTASY ADVENTURES, OR INVOLVING CHARACTER GENERATION OR SCENARIO GENERATION.
Pretty vague, right? I could see how that might just cover something such as the RGMC. So, I dug around and found the trademark for a video game that we all know and love, Wolfenstein 3D. I've posted the document here if you're interested, but this is what it says:
FOR: COMPUTER SOFTWARE GAMES AND COMPUTER GAME PROGRAMS.
I guess that settles that. I was shocked at how simple the language was back then. For comparison, check out how much more detailed the trademark claim for Promise of Power is, below, or check it out here.
FOR: VIDEO GAME CARTRIDGES; VIDEO GAME DISCS; VIDEO GAME INTERACTIVE CONTROL FLOOR PADS OR MATS; VIDEO GAME INTERACTIVE REMOTE CONTROL UNITS; VIDEO GAME JOYSTICKS; VIDEO GAME MACHINES FOR USE WITH TELEVISIONS; VIDEO GAME SOFTWARE; VIDEO GAME TAPE CASSETTES.
And that's in addition to another big paragraph about toys and cheat guides and dozens of other things. Amazing.

I think Palladium is covered in this case, so long as the trademark isn't found to be fraudulent, as Trion claims. More on that in the morning. Just thought this might interest some people.

Also, how do you like the new logo for this article series?

1 comments:

Steve Dubya said...

I think that this is going to boil down to interpretation - look at two of the WoW TMs, which to me as a layman would seem to be dealing with the same damn thing.

http://tess2.uspto.gov/bin/showfield?f=doc&state=4008:9gbrv3.2.4

http://tess2.uspto.gov/bin/showfield?f=doc&state=4008:9gbrv3.2.5

As for the logo, about the only suggestion I would have would be to keep the question mark at the end.

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