The Top 10 Biggest Trademark Disputes of 2018

Following on from last year's post about the biggest trademark battles of the year, Lawyer Monthly has put together this year's round up.

  1. Fortnite Vs PUBG

While there hasn’t been an official trademark court battle over this, it has been one of the most highly debated IP issues of the year, and merits a discussion.

In January 2018, Player Unknown Battlegrounds (PUBG), a computer game owned by PUBG Corp, filed a copyright lawsuit in South Korea against Epic Games, the owners of Fortnite, one of the biggest profit making computer games of the year. The premise of both of these games is a ‘survival mode’ or ‘battle royale’ in which up to 100 players descend on an island and compete until only one remains.

The suit seeks to defend the idea behind the game, rather than any particular code, or visual property. The suit was however immediately withdrawn, and an explanation hasn’t really been given by official representatives of the games. One discussion regarding this surrounds the fact that both parties have the same major investor, a Chinese tech firm called Tencent Holdings. In addition, PUBG’s game uses a software engine called Unreal Engine, a technology developed and licenced by Epic Games.

Reported in the Guardian, Alex Tutty of entertainment law firm Sheridans, said: “Given the potential weaknesses of the claim – at least under English law – and the amount of publicity the claim received, either PUBG thought that they had made their point, been put off by the negative press they garnered, or the realities of how potentially weak the claim was became apparent.”

Here are the two game trailers, what do you think?

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