Eagle eyed gaming fans have noticed that Nintendo has registered a new trade mark for Donkey Kong raising hopes amongst gamers that a new Donkey Kong may be imminent, one year after the original game celebrated its 40th anniversary. These observers have also pointed out that this is an entirely new trade mark registration, and not simply a renewal of an existing mark, which covers the downloading of games onto consoles which is presumably how any new game would be made available to consumers.
Computer game developers have long been aware of the importance of protecting the names of games, character likenesses and similar in the run-up to the launch of big titles. Computer games are incredibly big businesses and quite a large proportion of this comes not from the game itself but from merchandise and other related sales. It is therefore vital that the developers file robust trade marks to protect these additional revenue streams and ensure that other businesses are not able to exploit their characters.
There is a lesson in this story for any business considering its trade mark protection across its business. Trade marks, for the most part, only protect your brand in respect of the goods and services that they applied for. This means that other companies could make use of the same or a similar mark for other products which may impact your business. It is important therefore when considering trade mark applications to seek protection, not just for your core activities but any related activities or indeed anything that you do not currently offer but may offer in the medium term.
The news of this trade mark application is potentially exciting for gaming fans but also provides a useful example to businesses in general about the importance of robust trade mark protection. If this raises any questions for you or your business then please do not hesitate to contact the team at McDaniels Law on 0191 281 4000 or by email at email@example.com: Case Law, Companies, Consumer Law, Legal News, News, Trade Marks