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Star Wars Prequels The Courts Your Rights Online

LucasFilm Sues Jedi Mind Over 'Jedi' 212

An anonymous reader writes "Apparently the force is strong with LucasFilm's legal department, as they've sued the company Jedi Mind for trademark infringement and breach of contract, among other things. While LucasFilm doesn't actually own a trademark on 'Jedi,' it claims that its related marks are close enough, and that Jedi Mind had agreed last year to phase out the use of 'Jedi' in its name and product names."
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LucasFilm Sues Jedi Mind Over 'Jedi'

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  • Re:No brainer (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Sockatume ( 732728 ) on Wednesday August 25, 2010 @05:58AM (#33366786)

    Given Lucas' rampant brand-whoring, I would've thought it was a reasonable argument that anyone seeing a product marked "Jedi X" would assume it came out of the Lucas stable.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 25, 2010 @06:18AM (#33366842)

    No the word Jedi is not made up, it was borrowed from Japanese.

    Lucas said in an interview that he was inspired by a Jidai Geki (samurai-era soap opera) on TV during a visit to Japan.

    You have failed me for the last time!

  • by PseudonymousBraveguy ( 1857734 ) on Wednesday August 25, 2010 @08:12AM (#33367320)

    Just as you don't just use Apple's trademarks to sell, say, "iPod tyres" (pun on the iPod wheel, see?)

    Fun fact: A German designer tried to sell an eggcup under the name of eiPott (German pronouncation is almost equal to iPod, but literally translates to egg cup) and got sued by Apple. While the judge found the name to be slightly funny, he ruled it was a trademark infringement. At first the decision was met with surprise, because trademarks in Germany are bound to the field of trade they are registered for, but then it was revealed that Apple did indeed register the mark iPod for electronical entertainment devices and for kitchen supplies.

  • by Pharmboy ( 216950 ) on Wednesday August 25, 2010 @09:27AM (#33367968) Journal

    Technically, trademarks apply to specific product types only, ie: there are many companies that use the same trademarked name for completely different products. I know because I work for one of them. There are several different companies that use the same trademarked names for different products, and there isn't anything the others can do. Oh, they can SUE but technically, as long as you aren't trying to confuse the public on the ownership it is acceptable. In this instance, they ARE trying to confuse the public (in the legal sense), so it is likely infringing.

    Nissan Computers and Nissan Motors is one example. Go to www.nissan.com and read about the most fucked up court battle you can imagine on this.

    Other examples would be Chunky Soup® vs. Chunky® candy bars, SunMaster® grow lamps vs. SunMaster® tomato seeds vs. SunMaster® tanning beds. All are legally registered trademarks for their particular industries. Technically, you could have IBM® brand breakfast cereal as long as it wasn't marketed to confuse the customer to think that International Business Machines, Inc. wasn't the parent company. Obviously, this wouldn't stop them from trying to sue you, but the way that trademark law is setup, it is considered perfectly legitimate.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 25, 2010 @09:29AM (#33368000)

    Honestly, it looks to me like textbook application of trademark law

    And what exactly is this "Jedi" product that Lucasfilm sells? Uh huh. Oh that's right, it isn't a product at all it's the name of these warrior/monk types in a story. Hmmmm I'd say that it is in fact quite different from a "textbook application of trademark law."

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