Mojang and Bethesda Reach A Settlement In 'Scrolls' Trademark Dispute

from the scrolls-will-be-scrolls dept

In one of the biggest letdowns in trademark history, Bethesda and Mojang have finally ended the dispute over the trademark status of the name “Scrolls”. No massive court battle. No Quake 3 match. Just a simple settlement. In a very short post on the Mojang blog, Carl Manneh answers the two big questions about the dispute:

To answer the big question – yes Scrolls is still going to be called Scrolls.

To answer the second question – we aren’t going to keep the trade mark.

So that’s that. Which is probably just as well. After the initial ruling that gamers would most likely not be confused over the similar names, Bethesda’s success in court was looking bleak. This was probably the best solution for all parties involved. Bethesda wins by not losing the appearance of control over the word “Scrolls”, and not ending up like Tim Langdell. Mojang gets to continue calling its this game “Scrolls”, while ceding the right to name any subsequent game “Scrolls”. The only downside is that we lose the opportunity to set legal precedent on the ability to control individual words within a trademarked phrase.

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Companies: bethesda, mojang

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Comments on “Mojang and Bethesda Reach A Settlement In 'Scrolls' Trademark Dispute”

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17 Comments
Anonymous Coward says:

Scrolls

Does this mean nobody own the “Scrolls” trademark now, or is the settlement that Mojang can call its game “Scrolls” in exchange for Bethesda owning the trademark to “Scrolls”?

If it’s the latter, I pity the next guy who wants to use the word “Scrolls” as part of his game’s title.

Anonymous Coward says:

My point of view

I don’t know if this was necessarily Beth being asshats about trying to claim “Scrolls”. Yes, that’s what was claimed in the lawsuit, but it may have been a more “offense is the best defense” sort of move.

I mean, think of it from the other side – if Mojang gets control of the more generic “Scrolls” trademark, then would Beth be violating that with the name “The Elder Scrolls”? I don’t think trademark law has anything resembling “Prior Art” does it?

E. Zachary Knight (profile) says:

Re: My point of view

Trademark does. That was what this was all about. Under trademark law, when someone applies for a mark, other groups with similar trademarks can challenge that registration. That is what Bethesda did in this case.

However, someone successfully getting a trademark does not mean that other groups with similar marks already registered are infringing. They are in the clear.

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