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#1 Edited by development (2002 posts) -

According to Candy Crush developer, 'King,' similarities like this:

are grounds for takedown requests, where a smaller developer is being asked to either change their game or remove it from the app store. The smaller developer, Benny Hsu, had this to say:

Myself and other indie developers don't have the money or resources to fight back… I plan on changing the name if that is what I must do.

Just another trademark troll in what is sure to be an endless trend of trademark trolls. If you feel like this is as ridiculous as I do, you may want to sign this petition (it's not a sure thing; but it might help) to get the trademark to be rescinded during its 30-day challenge-period.

If you're in the mood to create something really stupid, then join me in the Candy Jam.

Rock Paper Shotgun and Forbes have more thorough articles on the whole mess.

Source: http://www.gamezebo.com/news/2014/01/20/king-has-trademarked-word-candy-and-youre-probably-infringing

#2 Edited by Brodehouse (9521 posts) -

I hope they die in a fire with that Edge fucker.

#3 Posted by development (2002 posts) -

Also, I'd just like to continue the trend of users saying FUCK the stupid-small 60-character limit on titles, and FUCK how it erases your entire post when you try to submit. I love getting to re-type everything.

#4 Posted by Darson (441 posts) -

What's Candy Crush? Fuck your trademark.

#5 Posted by development (2002 posts) -

@darson said:

What's Candy Crush?

A ridiculously popular Bejeweled clone that begs the user to buy things at every possible moment.

#6 Posted by cmblasko (1108 posts) -

Scumbags. Everyone rename your use of "candy" to "candee."

#7 Posted by AlexW00d (6168 posts) -

Tbf their game is just Bejewelled but with sweets, so Jeff Green should sue their candy asses.

#8 Posted by development (2002 posts) -

@alexw00d said:

Tbf their game is just Bejewelled but with sweets, so Jeff Green should sue their candy asses.

Nice.

#9 Posted by Generic_username (588 posts) -

"According to King, Benny Hsu’s game was the only one that has received an infringement notice so far. Their contention is that the title of that game employs keyword stuffing practices prohibited by the app store as well. I am trying to determine if there are indeed other developers who received such notices. King’s claim may be defensible from a developer’s point of view if they are highly selective about how they enforce it—which is not what the reporting so far has suggested. I will update this post as the story develops…"

Comment from the writer at Forbes.

It seems like the dev who was contacted isn't exactly in a super defensible position, and if it IS true that he was the only one contacted about this, then King isn't being all that horrible with their patent trolling. Not that the patent office should have allowed them to trademark "candy" as it pertains to video games in the first place, but that's more the patent offices fault than anyone else's.

That said, fuck Candy Crush Saga. It's a garbage game, and it's awful that they're making copyright claims on ANYONE else when their game is just "get little kids to pay us out the ass for a fucking bejeweled clone."

#10 Edited by planetfunksquad (399 posts) -

George Broussard tweeted that the Banner Saga guys had actually received a cease and desist from King over the use of the word "Saga". I dunno if it's true, but if it is, it's super fucked up.

EDIT:

Not quite a cease and desist but still...

#11 Posted by Demoskinos (14523 posts) -
#12 Edited by Generic_username (588 posts) -

@planetfunksquad: That's fucked. Hopefully they try this on a company with the resources to defend themselves soon, and this can finally stop. I think the worst part about this is the fact that they're going after these smaller devs that can't actually afford to put up a fight.

#13 Edited by development (2002 posts) -

@generic_username said:

@planetfunksquad: That's fucked. Hopefully they try this on a company with the resources to defend themselves soon, and this can finally stop. I think the worst part about this is the fact that they're going after these smaller devs that can't actually afford to put up a fight.

That is definitely the problem. The guy who patent trolled the usage of "Edge" for years was only ever finally shut down because he dared to challenge EA, who obviously had the money to put up a legal battle. The patent system is so god damn fucked right now (or was it always like this?). Sounds like they haven't updated their procedures in the last 30 years, and are totally unprepared for things like podcasts and games, or anything else tech related.

#14 Posted by mrcraggle (1800 posts) -

King are just the newest Zynga. Rip everyone off, get huge, then sue those you ripped off.

#15 Posted by Abendlaender (2736 posts) -

Wow, what a bunch of a**holes. Somebody should make a game called Candy Edge Saga and see what happens.

#16 Edited by Generic_username (588 posts) -

@development said:

@generic_username said:

@planetfunksquad: That's fucked. Hopefully they try this on a company with the resources to defend themselves soon, and this can finally stop. I think the worst part about this is the fact that they're going after these smaller devs that can't actually afford to put up a fight.

That is definitely the problem. The guy who patent trolled the usage of "Edge" for years was only ever finally shut down because he dared to challenge EA, who obviously had the money to put up a legal battle. The patent system is so god damn fucked right now (or was it always like this?). Sounds like they haven't updated their procedures in the last 30 years, and are totally unprepared for things like podcasts and games, or anything else tech related.

I think it's been fucked for a while now, due to it's original purpose being completely lost to corporate interest. It was originally made so that the guy who made something unique would have first-dibs on any profit from from it, but it's been turned into this crazy "IF I CAN'T HAVE IT, NO ONE CAN" thing that hurts consumers and hurts the idea of a competitive marketplace. We still obviously need some sort of way to keep people from stealing ideas and running away with the money, but the way things are right now isn't even doing that. The number of cloned products that appear (sometimes even before the original has even had a chance to come out, as was the case with Ridiculous Fishing) is insane, and it doesn't appear to actually be slowing down. I mean, Candy Crush is a fucking Bejeweled clone in the first place.

#17 Edited by development (2002 posts) -

@abendlaender said:

Wow, what a bunch of a**holes. Somebody should make a game called Candy Edge Saga and see what happens.

Sure I'll make that for the Candy Jam. Just don't sue me for stealing your name.

edit: I'm serious, by the way. I'll post a blog about Candy Edge Saga: Spike Scrolls when it's done.

#18 Edited by CatsAkimbo (600 posts) -

@planetfunksquad: is George Broussard one of the people defending the trademark, or is he just weighing in from the sidelines? Context for quotes please! :)

#19 Posted by planetfunksquad (399 posts) -

@catsakimbo: George Broussard is the creator of Duke Nukem, and he's just on the sidelines. Sorry, I forget that not everybody knows who certain industry dudes are.

#20 Posted by Brodehouse (9521 posts) -

@generic_username: The incredible amount of clones and new ideas immediately cloned and everyone making everything on everything makes the mobile game market seem _exactly_ like the home console market in 1981 or so.

#21 Posted by Generic_username (588 posts) -

@brodehouse: Oh, see, I don't have that context really, as I was born in 1993 :P So my views on things are a little skewed, obviously.

#22 Posted by Onomatopoeia (101 posts) -

Trademarking™ words™ is™ fucking™ stupid™.

#23 Posted by alwaysbebombing (1513 posts) -

That's pretty monstrous.

Online
#24 Posted by CatsAkimbo (600 posts) -

@planetfunksquad: Np, I knew who he was and that's actually what confused me -- how the Duke Nukem guy was related to this crappy bejeweled clone. It's like Cliff Bleszinski talking about farmville.

#25 Edited by beepmachine (618 posts) -

How can the even attempt to claim that The Banner Saga is somehow infringing on Candy Crush? One look will tell you that they're entirely different things.

The entire grounds for all of this is absurd anyway since their game is just bejeweled with candy

EDIT: So do they even have a trademark on the word Saga? That document Broussard linked to was all companies being targeted that made games with the word "Saga" in them.

#26 Posted by Nightriff (4866 posts) -

This is crazy dumb, and as someone said, they are basically the new zynga.

#27 Posted by BBAlpert (1354 posts) -

The color pink is a registered trademark of Owens Corning, so this kind of thing isn't really new.

Online
#28 Posted by planetfunksquad (399 posts) -

@catsakimbo: It seems like he just caught wind of it and was a little outraged. Maybe he gives a fuck because Banner Saga is pretty good and what King is doing is pretty shitty? Like I said, I can't verify how true his statements are, but it wouldn't surprise me if they were.

#29 Edited by mosespippy (3983 posts) -

@catsakimbo: He also has this strange knack of getting inside info in the games industry. More than once he was the first person to reveal that some studio somewhere had shutdown or had massive layoffs. Its probably a result of the fact that so many people used to work with him during those Duke Nukem years.

#30 Posted by Pezen (1550 posts) -

So the creators of last years biggest Peggle ripoff, Papa Pear, is going after developers over the use of words like Saga and Candy? Wow. That's fucked up.

#31 Posted by Disaya (279 posts) -

Wow this is pretty gross and shit.

@bbalpert said:

The color pink is a registered trademark of Owens Corning, so this kind of thing isn't really new.

I think that the pink panther is their mascot (?), so is that referring to the particular pink of the pink panther, or just all forms and shades of pink?

#32 Posted by TowerSixteen (542 posts) -

Unless your obviously cashing in on the recognized name of their product a suit would stand no chance in court. I think the biggest weapon thier trying to utilize isn't the legal fees. It's the idea that smaller indies, being under-informed on the law and unwilling to seek counsel because of a not-entirely-true belief that it would be too expensive, would back down and be intimidated before they know that most of them could just laugh and tell them to fuck off, and even if they did more than just posture(and it's very possible they wouldn't) it wouldn't take much or long to get a ridiculous claim laughed out of court.

In other words, they're probably banking on people falling into the trap when their strongly-worded takedown requests implies the takedownee's only options are to back down or pay out the nose. But even a court-appointed lawyer could defeat most of the bullshit potential uses, unless there really is worrisome similarities and therefore somewhat reasonable grounds, so I think they're harnessing more the intimidating misinformation about legal fees rather than legal fees themselves.

#33 Posted by crithon (3059 posts) -

Oh boy, this is ridiculous. This is no way this can't blow up in their faces.

I'm reminded of 80s XMen comics with Mojo and his Trademark Police

#34 Posted by bluefish (420 posts) -

I would HAPPILY sign.

But why does this site need my name, street address and email address? Because that's a deal breaker.

#35 Posted by TowerSixteen (542 posts) -

@bluefish said:

I would HAPPILY sign.

But why does this site need my name, street address and email address? Because that's a deal breaker.

Don't do it. There's nothing more useless than an internet petition and you will be point on a zillion email/mailing lists.

#36 Posted by GERALTITUDE (2860 posts) -

Pathetic.

#37 Edited by bluefish (420 posts) -

@bluefish said:

I would HAPPILY sign.

But why does this site need my name, street address and email address? Because that's a deal breaker.

Don't do it. There's nothing more useless than an internet petition and you will be point on a zillion email/mailing lists.

Petitions have had effects here and there, but I'm a pragmatic enough guy to know when my time is likely wasted. I just hate this sort of leeching capitalist shit so much I'd like to at least try and have my voice heard.

But yea, the mailing list thing killed it.

#38 Posted by Random45 (996 posts) -

Man, the whole patent system needs a freaking overhaul. It's so ridiculously broken right now that it's painful to watch. You should ONLY be able to patent your unique title, not fucking words of the English language.

Also, it's kind of odd that the ad at the bottom of this page is for patent attorneys... weird. Do they know which threads I'm viewing or something?

#39 Posted by TheHT (10810 posts) -

ಠ_ಠ

#40 Posted by MentalDisruption (1618 posts) -

That's fucking stupid.

#41 Posted by TowerSixteen (542 posts) -

@random45 said:

Also, it's kind of odd that the ad at the bottom of this page is for patent attorneys... weird. Do they know which threads I'm viewing or something?

Unless you take steps to block it, and depending on what your signed into and what browser your running, they absolutely do.

#42 Posted by BBAlpert (1354 posts) -

@disaya said:

Wow this is pretty gross and shit.

@bbalpert said:

The color pink is a registered trademark of Owens Corning, so this kind of thing isn't really new.

I think that the pink panther is their mascot (?), so is that referring to the particular pink of the pink panther, or just all forms and shades of pink?

I'm sure it's referring to that one specific shade of pink, but that one specific shade is pretty much THE shade that anyone would think of when they think of a pink-ass pink.

On a side note, I'm aware that I'm probably misusing the word shade and should have said "hue" or "value" or something. Sorry color theory duders.

Online
#43 Posted by Generic_username (588 posts) -

Unless your obviously cashing in on the recognized name of their product a suit would stand no chance in court. I think the biggest weapon thier trying to utilize isn't the legal fees. It's the idea that smaller indies, being under-informed on the law and unwilling to seek counsel because of a not-entirely-true belief that it would be too expensive, would back down and be intimidated before they know that most of them could just laugh and tell them to fuck off, and even if they did more than just posture(and it's very possible they wouldn't) it wouldn't take much or long to get a ridiculous claim laughed out of court.

In other words, they're probably banking on people falling into the trap when their strongly-worded takedown requests implies the takedownee's only options are to back down or pay out the nose. But even a court-appointed lawyer could defeat most of the bullshit potential uses, unless there really is worrisome similarities and therefore somewhat reasonable grounds, so I think they're harnessing more the intimidating misinformation about legal fees rather than legal fees themselves.

I think that's absolutely the case.

Though a legal fight can be expensive even if you win. There's a lot of noise about how much money getting dragged into court is, so even if that's not the case (which I have very little context for whether or not it actually is) I'm sure most small devs are under the impression that it is.

#44 Posted by shinjin977 (743 posts) -

Man, this industry. what the fuck.

#45 Posted by Darji (5294 posts) -

This is really fucked up. Can no one do something against this scam?

#46 Edited by HeyGuys (326 posts) -

I think their trademark application has already been approved actually, and it's not a trade mark of the word "candy" but only the word "candy" as it relates to video games titles. I might have more sympathy for Hsu if the app store, especially on Android, weren't a fucking chaotic black market of pirated/deceitful products trying to cash in on other success (Candy Crush, to a degree, even). Then there's the fact that Hsu's starting to look pretty shady with his keyword loaded game (look up the full name) and it's come to light that he lied in the original story about "other developers" being victims of the copyright enforcement. Hsu's game already violated Apple's rules for keyword packing in titles before all this.

So far I don't think any legal threats have even been made as King has relied on Apple to enforce their copyright, not courts, and Apple has discretion over what they decide to allow on their marketplace.

#47 Posted by AMyggen (2460 posts) -

@shinjin977: This isn't unique to this industry at all, it's more a problem with the US system of patent laws (I know this is a trademark, but still) where it has become way too easy to patent mundane shit and then trolling companies to pay up, destroying what the system was set up to promote: Innovation. Look at this shit for example: http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2013/09/patent-troll-claiming-playlists-and-podcasts-scores-license-with-sandisk/

NPR's Planet Money also did two interesting episodes on this, available online.

#48 Posted by Abendlaender (2736 posts) -

@abendlaender said:

Wow, what a bunch of a**holes. Somebody should make a game called Candy Edge Saga and see what happens.

Sure I'll make that for the Candy Jam. Just don't sue me for stealing your name.

edit: I'm serious, by the way. I'll post a blog about Candy Edge Saga: Spike Scrolls when it's done.

That's awesome, but if the game blows up and becomes the next Minecraft I'll....be really confused

#49 Posted by AMyggen (2460 posts) -

@heyguys: I still think it's crazy that you can TM the word "Candy" when it relates to video games. You shouldn't be able to TM such a common word, it reminds me of the whole "Scrolls" story.

#50 Edited by jsnyder82 (725 posts) -

Well, now I'm glad I got to level 35 and quit, because they wanted me to pay for the game after that. And I'm like, no way.