from the holy-trademark-abuse,-batman! dept
When it comes to being IP bullies, DC Comics has built quite the reputation for itself. From its taking on the gravestone of a victim of child abuse in the name of protectionism to taking on BBQ joints because of a logo that includes a bat. That last historical example foreshadows this latest news, in which DC Comics decides to take on a Spanish soccer team for having the audacity to include a bat in its logo.
According to a report from Yahoo Eurosport, DC Comics is suing the Spanish soccer team Liga Giants Valencia over their logo, which apparently resembles Batman’s logo in that it also features a bat. Unfortunately, according to European reports, the bat has been a symbol used in Spain for about 800 years. There’s even a fucking Wikipedia page about it. And the soccer team’s bat logo has been in use since 1919, before Batman was first published.
Here’s the logo in dispute.
Do the two logos have similarities? Sure, but that says a great deal more about the general indistinctness of DC Comics’ mark than it does about any sort of malicious copying by the Valencia club. Add to that the fact that, even working with such a general shape and color scheme, there are distinct differences between these two marks and the many, many other Batman marks that have been registered in the past, and one wonders what DC Comics was thinking yet again with another silly trademark dispute. After all, were you to review every Batman logo that’s been registered as a trademark, a means for customers to identify a particular brand, you have to wonder if there hasn’t been a real attempt to simply trademark every possible iteration of a bat as a logo. And that makes me wonder why such a practice doesn’t invalidate the trademark altogether.
All this and we haven’t even mentioned yet that I’m fairly certain that DC Comics doesn’t own a soccer club anywhere, so I’m not even remotely clear on how these two logos are competing in the same marketplace with the potential to confuse the same potential consumers. Add to that the long-established use of a bat as a logo in the Valencia region and this looks like a losing proposition for DC Comics.
Probably, DC thought this dumbassery would fly under the radar because it’s happening Spain, which does not have its own official Has DC Done Something Stupid Today counter, but they’re wrong, because The Outhouse is going international!
It has been 0 days! Olé!