Bullying for the mark of your trade

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Sorry friend, you’re in the way of our profits.

Through the years, many people have asked me why I dislike Apple products so much. While I do stand by most of my major reasons for disliking them, like software and hardware limitations, the yearly hardware upgrade cycle, overpriced shit, etc, the tipping point from dislike to INTENSE dislike had to do with a lawsuit.

Steve-Jobs-with-patent

and we follow with iSue and iRape!

Many years ago, Apple always tried to push themselves as the underdog from Microsoft, and played the “company for the people” card. They claimed to be there for their customers, and valued the “little guy”. This all changed when the iPod came out. Their marketing juggernaut made it one of the most popular electronic devices in history, even though equivalent and even better devices existed at the time. To preserve their branding, they started suing everyone who had the letters “p”, “o”, and “d” together in their name or trademark. Among those lawsuits was a device known as the “profit pod”. What was this device used for, you ask? It was used in the arcade industry to keep track of how many quarters arcade machines took in on a daily basis, and uploaded that info to a laptop or tablet.

Once this lawsuit became public, and I read about it, the scales in my head were tipped and I began my intense disliking of them.

Today, I hit another tipping point with a company, and for exactly the same reason. Games Workshop, the makers of Warhammer, Space Hulk, and various other miniatures tabletop games, is going after anyone who uses the words “space” and “marine” together in just about any science fiction setting. It doesn’t matter if you’re making a board game, video game, movie, etc, if you use the term “space marines”, they’re gonna go after you.

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That’s what it’s all about!

The term space marines has been around for a very long time, and is a common term in science fiction. That hasn’t stopped them from sending a legal threat to Amazon.com about author MCA Hogarth’s book “Spots the space marine”. They claim that the title of her book infringes on their mark, and Amazon should delist it, which they did. The really fucked up part here, is that Amazon was not under legal obligation to do so, since a takedown notice is a copyright claim, and this is a trademark claim, so it doesn’t fall under the DMCA. Be that as it may, this author is stuck suffering the consequences of this, all because she doesn’t have the spare capital to spend on a pricey legal battle over the trademark.

This is how these big companies work. They try to make certain words only relate to their products in common society, so they sue anyone who uses it, or a variation of it. This is done to reduce the terms’ market saturation as it pertains to other products, and preserves market saturation of its own product.

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Spread the word!

So now, going forward, I won’t be supporting anything Games Workshop has to offer. Plenty of other games out there, so you assholes can go fuck yourselves. I hate bullies who pick on other people’s legitimate work just because they can, knowing full well that the little guy can’t retaliate against such a huge opposition. If you know any other gamers with morals, pass this on to them. I certainly will.

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