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(Repost from TGN): Verdict from GW vs. CHS

Posted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 8:32 pm
by Linrandir
Hey all! I just saw this over on Tabletop Gaming News and thought it merited a cross-post here.

http://www.tabletopgamingnews.com/2013/06/18/74763/
Bell of Lost Souls has posted up the verdict regarding the court case between Games Workshop and Chapterhouse Studio.

From the post:

Breaking down the counts along the different categories we have:

Copyright Claims
160 claims alleged against CHS
-GW won on 1/3 of the claims, including items such as CHS’ Powerfists
-CHS won on 2/3 of the claims, including the use of the underlying shape and size of GW Shoulderpads.

General Trademark Claims
9 claims alleged against CHS
-CHS won all 9 claims, including either no infringement, or fair use of the GW trademarks on CHS’ website.

Disputed Trademark Claims
21 disputed trademark claims alleged against CHS
CHS won 11 claims
GW won 10 claims

GW Trademarks ruled “Previously Used in Commerce” Claims
61 claims alleged against CHS
CHS won 35 claims
GW won 27

Notable Trends and Individual Products Under Dispute
CHS lost on some individual products including:
-Doomseer
-Dark Elf Arch Tortress

CHS won on some individual products including:
-Jetbike
-Super-heavy walker model
-Lizard Ogre

Damages Awarded:
CHS ordered to pay GW damages of $25,000 USD

Both sides may appeal the ruling.

Thoughts and Implications:
It’s looking like however CHS as an entity comes out of this ruling, the implications for the 3rd party industry are profound.

-The ruling of no infringement for the use of the underlying shape and size of GW shoulderpads is now on the legal record.
-Possibly more important is not guilty verdicts on the use of GW trademarks and terms on the CHS website.
-While certain CHS products themselves may disappear from the Earth in the aftermath of this case, it looks like the verdict may have provided a clear blueprint for the 3rd party accessory bits market. One that allows legal use of certain GW trademarks and terms in a way that goes way beyond what Nottingham themselves ever wished to allow.
Let the speculation begin...

Re: (Repost from TGN): Verdict from GW vs. CHS

Posted: Tue Jun 18, 2013 10:12 pm
by tordeck
Score one for the little guy?

Re: (Repost from TGN): Verdict from GW vs. CHS

Posted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 12:22 am
by 3eland
tordeck wrote:Score one for the little guy?
They still have to pay 25,000... that sucks
Maybe even court fees?

Re: (Repost from TGN): Verdict from GW vs. CHS

Posted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 12:50 am
by kturock
Usually on a split decision, the fess are split. Each paying they're own lawyers.

Re: (Repost from TGN): Verdict from GW vs. CHS

Posted: Wed Jun 19, 2013 2:06 am
by Linrandir
Also it seems that the legal firm representing CHS did so pro bono, which is well within the price range of "For Free."

I'd imagine GW's legal firm did not do them the same favor.

Re: (Repost from TGN): Verdict from GW vs. CHS

Posted: Thu Jun 20, 2013 3:44 am
by MagickalMemories
This is the jury verdict and not the judge's ruling. He still has to go over everything and make sure it's all correct. Anything the jury ruled on could be changed. Same for the $ amount, I believe.
No worries on that amount. Nick's already talking about running a Kickstarter, and I'm planning to help a little.
The $25K isn't bad, when GW was asking for $400K.

So far, I wouldn't call it "Score 1 for the little guy." I'd call it more like "Score 2/3 for little guys everywhere" (in the after-market, custom sculpted bits market).

Eric