Lego’s Fun Attempt at Using Trademarks to Clamp Down Design

IPKat, which I keep up to date on my patent and copyright law with (it’s good sometimes 🙂 ), has an interesting article on Lego trying to appeal a cancellation of a trademark they attempted – a photograph of a Lego brick.

It is fascinating not just how big businesses try and keep what (under current international law at least) is not copyrightable or patentable, but that they still want to make sure no one else can ever use.

I love Lego. I just rightly am satisfied this long winded appeal thing, which is a fascinating little story, comes out on the side that: It doesn’t make sense that a trademark can be of the product itself. Thank goodness.

Basically it seemed to be a way to stop anyone making the same designed bricks. This would be a problem – you’d never compete on quality, just instead have a monopoly.

Designing things like Toys must be a minefield. Any kind of games are similar – depending on jurisdiction (it’s an area of law that is quite complex I’m led to believe), designers sadly have patent worries (if you plan to do an American release) and overburdened copyright to deal with at the best of times. Sigh.

(BTW: I want this to be a record of what at least I think is interesting, and dammit I’m failing – I’ll get back to posting something more original someday. Give me time, I’m just finished Baldur’s Gate, and am now on Baldur’s Gate II – I guess I could post up the mod list and Baldur’s Gate Trilogy installation hints for those who are interested.)