Last week Edge Games filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against Electronic Arts (EA) alleging unlawful use of the “Edge” trademark. EA launched the “Mirror’s Edge” game in 2007 and Edge Games asserts in its lawsuit the company has exclusive rights to use to the “Edge” trademark in the electronic game industry. As a matter of fact, the USPTO (United States Patent and Trrademark Office) has denied EA’s application to trademark “Mirror’s Edge” citing the various “Edge” trademarks registered to Edge Games.
Apparently, Edge Games aggressively defends the Edge trademark. The company has filed trademark infringement lawsuits against New World Computing over their title Planet’s Edge, Marvel Entertainment over their titles Cutting Edge, Double Edge, and Over the Edge, Sony Entertainment over their Playstation Edge, Edge Tech Corporation over their “The Edge” hardware, and John Coates over his EdgeGamers online community. The company is also embroiled in an on-going legal battle with Mobigames regarding their “Edge” i-Phone game application.
Can Edge Games assert exclusive use of the “Edge” trademark in the electronic game industry?
Trademark law provides an owner of a registered trademark exclusive use of the trademark in the product or service classification the trademark identifies. The USPTO categorizing all goods and services in classifications. For example, all entertainment services are identified by Class 41. Edge Games argument is it was the first to use and receive USPTO registration of the “Edge” trademark in the gaming classification. Therefore, no other game company or game can have “Edge” trademark in the product name. Apparently, the USPTO agrees because as discussed above, it has denied EA’s application for the “Mirror’s Edge” trademark. As a result, EA has filed a Petition for Cancellation of the “Edge” trademark and other variations of the “Edge” trademark owned by Edge Games. EA is asserting the trademark, “Edge” has not been properly use in commerce and Edge Games received the registrations fraudulently.
The companies had been in negotiations regarding the trademark but EA, Inc. released the “Mirror Edge” game series without Edge Game’s permission.
I am sure Edge Games filed the lawsuit as a negotiation tactic to either receive acceptable royalty or licensing fees from EA, Inc. or a buy-out. I have previously discussed how smaller companies have used this same negotiation tactic against Apple here. Edge Games assert they have been successful in receiving rightful licensing fees or effective cease and desist actions as a result of its defense of its trademarks. If Edge Games can prove “willful infringement” by EA, Inc., EA would have to pay significant damages for its unlawful use. EA may find it more economic to settle this dispute out of court.Category: Featured, Law | Tags: black web 2.0, Edge Games, EdgeGamers, Electronic Arts, gamers, games, Inc., IPLAW101, John Coates, Marvel Entertainment, Mirror's Edge, Mobigames, New World Computing, phillips givens law, Planet's Edge, PlayStation Edge, Sony Entertainment, trademark infringement, trademarks, video games