Sign in to follow this  
Carbon Maestro

"Brony" Being Blocked by Zazzle for Infringement Claims by Hasbro

Recommended Posts

If you guys didn't know, EQD recently posted something rather interesting about the word, "Brony" being used as infringement claims. What's interesting is that this is the first time Hasbro (The intellectual property rights holder) has authorized Zazzle to remove the pony related product due to the infringement of using tags such as "Brony" or "My Little Pony."

 

Just to clarify, Zazzle is an online retailer that allows users to upload images and create their own merchandise, and a few bronies sell pony merchandise through its products.

 

Here's the notice as posted by EQD:

Capture.PNG

 

While it's expected for Zazzle to take-down character names, interestingly enough, Zazzle will takedown any merchandise with notable sayings? Seriously Hasbro? Last time I checked, 20% Cooler isn't a trademark catchphrase. Is this something that's going to be a growing trend? Or will this just be temporary?

 

Personally I think it may have to do with the new marketing team back at Hasbro headquarters, and doing this sort of thing is like biting the hand that feeds you or playing with fire. It can get ugly. While it might be too soon to jump the ship, I certainly hope that this isn't a prelude to something much worse in the future. What do you guys think?

Edited by Carbon Maestro
  • Brohoof 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I feel as though this is more on Zazzles end then Hasbro's. Hasbro doesnt own the term "Brony" and they know it, thus they cant file any claims for it. The only thing Zazzle can take down is content that includes characters from the show.

  • Brohoof 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Zazzle please stop this bullcrap brony is a own term and we the fans call us bronies (pegasisters)

They have no reason to do this!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Eh. Redbubble and WeLoveFine are my favorite stops for MLP Merch - I haven't even heard of Zazzle before this, to be honest, and as daft as this Zazzle ordeal is, I've always heard/know from experience RB and WLF are really the two best places to go in terms of price and quality, respectively, so it's not *too* big of a blow :D

  • Brohoof 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Badges

Never heard of Zazzle, but seems like a dumb business move for them to make.

  • Brohoof 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think this is indicative of a different problem. Bronies aren't "the hand that feeds Hasbro" as much as we think: all the good merch is licensed or fanmade, not made by Hasbro, so that is what ens up more popular. Hasbro's revenues do not reflect the community's collective expenditure as close as could be expected, and because they have smaller producers (fans) profiting from their trademark without giving hem a cut, it makes business sense to become more competitive. In theory this would be improving to outdo the competition, but in this case they can limit the competition by cracking down on copyright infringement. It's all about the bottom line.

 

I'm not trying to paint Hasbro as an evil empire (well, no more evil than the rest of the empire); any company would do the same. Hasbro is fairly lax with copyright protection, and it only seems to be the content that actually poses a threat that they target. As for the term "brony", I can see that being blocked a search term because of the content it leads to, but the term itself is not their intellectual property and if it is, then there is some sort of conspiracy going on.

  • Brohoof 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sounds like they need to learn, that "brony" isn't really related to the damn show, since the origin has more to do with 4chan, then the show itself.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Eh. Redbubble and WeLoveFine are my favorite stops for MLP Merch - I haven't even heard of Zazzle before this, to be honest, and as daft as this Zazzle ordeal is, I've always heard/know from experience RB and WLF are really the two best places to go in terms of price and quality, respectively, so it's not *too* big of a blow :D

Not yet, but if the worst happens it could snowball. Hasbro could just pull all non-licensed products off that carry their characters likeness. Meaning welovefine's entire stock is gone for the most part. So while it may not be a huge loss to you, the after effects may carry large repercussions for other retailers, and could spark hasbro to "pull the plug" on large scale fandom made stuffs.

 

 

And this is worrying. Hasbro does not own the rights to any product that has the word "brony" on it, as they do not own any intellectual rights to that. While they may just be authorizing people to remove products, hasbro really cannot as it does not own the property.

  • Brohoof 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not yet, but if the worst happens it could snowball. Hasbro could just pull all non-licensed products off that carry their characters likeness. Meaning welovefine's entire stock is gone for the most part. So while it may not be a huge loss to you, the after effects may carry large repercussions for other retailers, and could spark hasbro to "pull the plug" on large scale fandom made stuffs.

 

 

And this is worrying. Hasbro does not own the rights to any product that has the word "brony" on it, as they do not own any intellectual rights to that. While they may just be authorizing people to remove products, hasbro really cannot as it does not own the property.

 

I don't think they are allowed to "own" a single word (As I recall, Google, Apple, can only own the names of their products if it's made up or it's not used from a cultural standpoint) so to say that the word "brony" is owned by intellectual rights is just incorrect because it's culturally significant and they cannot own such a thing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This should not be. I think this is Hasbro's issue. They cannot "own" the word "brony" as posters said above me. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Badges

Well, Hasbro can't technically copyright the word, since it originated on 4chan.

However, on Twitter people are tweeting about "alternatives", most of them being "ponybro".

:okiedokielokie:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's OUR word! You can't use that word!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's OUR word! You can't use that word!

your profile picture makes that sentence so much better 

  • Brohoof 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you guys didn't know, EQD recently posted something rather interesting about the word, "Brony" being used as infringement claims. What's interesting is that this is the first time Hasbro (The intellectual property rights holder) has authorized Zazzle to remove the pony related product due to the infringement of using tags such as "Brony" or "My Little Pony."

 

Just to clarify, Zazzle is an online retailer that allows users to upload images and create their own merchandise, and a few bronies sell pony merchandise through its products.

 

Here's the notice as posted by EQD:

While it's expected for Zazzle to take-down character names, interestingly enough, Zazzle will takedown any merchandise with notable sayings? Seriously Hasbro? Last time I checked, 20% Cooler isn't a trademark catchphrase. Is this something that's going to be a growing trend? Or will this just be temporary?

 

Personally I think it may have to do with the new marketing team back at Hasbro headquarters, and doing this sort of thing is like biting the hand that feeds you or playing with fire. It can get ugly. While it might be too soon to jump the ship, I certainly hope that this isn't a prelude to something much worse in the future. What do you guys think?

(this is not a criticism of you, just general commentary)

 

When someone uses the term "brony" when are they not referring to My Little Pony in some way these days?

 

I'd be surprised to find that even a few of the people tagging their merchandise "brony" on Zazzle were not selling infringing merchandise.

 

Unfortunately now people who want to sell, say, a shirt that just says "brony" will run into trouble. Wonder if there were very many such people on Zazzle to begin with.

 

Hasbro does not own a trademark on the word "brony", nor are they or Zazzle claiming that this is the case.

Meaning welovefine's entire stock is gone for the most part.

Welovefine has licenses for all of the merchandise they sell, including for My Little Pony.

I don't think they are allowed to "own" a single word (As I recall, Google, Apple, can only own the names of their products if it's made up or it's not used from a cultural standpoint) so to say that the word "brony" is owned by intellectual rights is just incorrect because it's culturally significant and they cannot own such a thing.

In the USA, you can trademark a word when it is used in relation to your product.

 

Example: King, the developers of Candy Crush Saga, used to own a trademark on the word "candy" when it is used as a title for a video game.

Edited by nami438

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

(this is not a criticism of you, just general commentary)

 

When someone uses the term "brony" when are they not referring to My Little Pony in some way these days?

 

I'd be surprised to find that even a few of the people tagging their merchandise "brony" on Zazzle were not selling infringing merchandise.

 

Unfortunately now people who want to sell, say, a shirt that just says "brony" will run into trouble. Wonder if there were very many such people on Zazzle to begin with.

 

Hasbro does not own a trademark on the word "brony", nor are they or Zazzle claiming that this is the case.

 

Welovefine has licenses for all of the merchandise they sell, including for My Little Pony.

In the USA, you can trademark a word when it is used in relation to your product.

 

Example: King, the developers of Candy Crush Saga, used to own a trademark on the word "candy" when it is used as a title for a video game.

But Hasbro has not trademarked the word in relation to their product. And Welovefine does sell artist provided works, that have not been authorized by Hasbro. Hasbro is giving license to a word it has not trademarked, and does not own product licensing to. If one wanted, this could be brought into court. And king's trademark was turned down by the patent office, as it was far to broad a trademark, and there are very few courts that would uphold such a idea. Edited by Miaq_The_Truthful

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

But Hasbro has not trademarked the word in relation to their product.

Correct, they have not and hopefully will never try to.

And Welovefine does sell artist provided works, that have not been authorized by Hasbro.

Hm? I am pretty sure WeLoveFine only sells licensed products.

Hasbro is giving license to a word it has not trademarked, and does not own product licensing to. If one wanted, this could be brought into court. And king's trademark was turned down by the patent office, as it was far to broad a trademark, and there are very few courts that would uphold such a idea.

In no way is Hasbro asserting that they own "brony". I don't think Hasbro has any part in this at all, this is all Zazzle. Zazzle is just trying to catch people selling infringing merchandise through their website, not asserting ownership over the word "brony".

And king's trademark was turned down by the patent office, as it was far to broad a trademark, and there are very few courts that would uphold such a idea.

I thought that King withdrew it voluntarily. Either way, I hope your way would have been what the patent office said to that. :lol:

Edited by nami438

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Correct, they have not and hopefully will never try to.

 

Hm? I am pretty sure WeLoveFine only sells licensed products.

 

In no way is Hasbro asserting that they own "brony". I don't think Hasbro has any part in this at all, this is all Zazzle. Zazzle is just trying to catch people selling infringing merchandise through their website, not asserting ownership over the word "brony".

 

I thought that King withdrew it voluntarily. Either way, I hope your way would have been what the patent office said to that. :lol:

But by blocking the word brony for a copywrite infringement, Zazzle is making the inference that Hasbro does own the word. While they have not yet filled for licensing to the word, one company is by extent making the inference that they are. This can lead to many, many issues both in the immediate, and later on. If I were Hasbro, I would send them a list of the MLP related copywrites the company owns, to avoid such an inference. And WeLoveFine has a general merchants license. They can legally sell FiM products, but it is not "official" sanction merchandise. Keeps those soccer moms from making complaints about the "I watch it for the plot" t-shirts.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The pop-culture term 'brony' is public domain.

 

If Zazzle plays this out correctly, then they may end up giving Hasbro a taste of their own civil-lawsuit medicine.

Edited by Asterisk Propernoun

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Join the herd!

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.