International Game Developers Contest King’s ‘Candy’ & ‘Saga’ Trademarks

Candy Crush Saga

The International Game Developers Association has issued a statement opposing King’s recent Candy Crush Saga trademark filing — in which the game developer claimed ownership of the words “candy” and “saga” across all gaming platforms.

Calling the move “predatory,” the group plans to use its Business and Legal Special Interest Group to investigate the filing, which was recently approved by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

“While we understand and respect the appropriate exercise of Trademark rights,” IGDA executive director Kate Edwards said in a statement, “King’s overreaching filing in its application for the Trademark for its game Candy Crush Saga, and its predatory efforts to apply that mark to each separate word contained in that name, are in opposition to the values of openness and cooperation we support industry wide, and directly contradict the statement King’s CEO, Riccardo Zacconi, made on January 27th.”

It will be interesting to hear what the IGDA’s legal team come back with. While King has so far been successful in having its trademark claims agreed to, any trademark allows 30 days for it to be opposed before being officially published.

While it does seem that King is being unreasonable by claiming such generic terms as “candy” and “saga” for its exclusive usage, it’s equally a massive problem for App Store developers (and users) to see the arrival of potentially thousands of derivative titles using misleadingly-close names whenever a hot new game appears.

Recently, Cult of Mac reported that both Apple and Google were refusing new apps featuring the word “flappy” designed to cash in on the Flappy Bird phenomenon.

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About the author

Luke DormehlLuke Dormehl is a UK-based journalist and author, with a background working in documentary film for Channel 4 and the BBC. He is the author of The Formula: How Algorithms Solve All Our Problems, And Create More and The Apple Revolution, both published by Penguin/Random House. His tech writing has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, Techmeme, and other publications. He'd like you a lot if you followed him on Twitter.

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