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iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 1 Basics of Intellectual Property Establishing a Balanced IP Portfolio for Games and Games-Related Products Establishing a Balanced IP Portfolio for Games and Games-Related Products Barry Quest MA(Oxon), MRSC, CPA, EPA, MITMA European Patent Attorney iPC 2 -Patents www.ipc2.co.uk
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 2 Game are valuable products Games are worth protecting
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 3 Games are really valuable Games are really worth protecting 2009 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 $310m on launch - more than any movie 2009 AVATAR $1b in first month for the film - game less successful …. ….. but ACII sold 6m copies Nov09 to Jan10
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 4 Traditionally patents were relied on Coincidence detection Sanders Associates – pre-Pong GB 1268821 (1969). First use of a television receiver as an interactive device. $18.5m in licence revenue by 1982
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 5 --- especially in the USA US Patent 4448419 (1982) The ‘virtual reel’ slot machine patent. $10.8m court settlement 1999 $10.8m court settlement 1999 – licensed to the industry ‘Anything new under the sun’ - but then Bilski.
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 6 Now a range of Intellectual Property Rights may need to be considered Monopolies or Copy-Rights Civil or Criminal Main Registration Rights patents – registered trade marks – registered designs patents – registered trade marks – registered designs Main Automatic Rights copyright – trade secrets copyright – trade secrets – unfair competition – designs Evolving Special Rights database – ‘image’ database – ‘image’ NOTE - different countries may have different laws
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 7 Patentability Exclusions (EPC) The following in particular shall not be regarded as inventions : (a) discoveries, scientific theories and mathematical methods; (b) aesthetic creations; (c) schemes, rules and methods for performing mental acts, playing games or doing business, and programs for computers; (d) presentations of information.
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 8 Patent Refused – ‘game rules’ GameAccount Patent Refused – ‘game rules’ EP1406709A (2004) GameAccount Dice used for selecting move numbers - there may be a limited set of selectable numbers to add greater skill in deciding how to allocate moves.
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 9 Patent Allowed – ‘technical feature’ Konami - EP0844580 (1996)
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 10 Registered Trade Marks Lara Croft Protected image BAR-X and OXO Trade marks and functional signs. (licensed widely)
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 11 Registered Designs Lara Croft Protected image Screen shots
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 12 Emotiv Design
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 13 Copyright – 70+ years (mostly) Works software, music, story board, screen art, software, music, story board, screen art, literary, spin off characters, etc Copying infringed only by copying infringed only by copyingInternational reciprocal rights reciprocal rights Dr Who’s Adipose
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 14 EU Software Directive 1991 Programs are literary works Interoperable programs don’t infringe don’t infringe Decompilation right
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 15 Only ‘substantial part’ but no copyright in ideas ‘No look and feel’ protection protection Nova v Mazooma Nova v Mazooma And BFG - Following Navataire v Easyjet 2007 No book plot protection: The Da Vinci Code, But Harry Potter Lexicon, And Flanimals?
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 16 ‘Program Format’ Program format – difficult to protect – detail might be copyright work, but not the concept – although might be unfair competition in some countries Opportunity Knocks (1988 New Zealand case) Opportunity Knocks (1988 New Zealand case) – no infringement – no infringement Big Brother Big Brother (not an infringement in Dutch case – infringed in Brazil case) 2002 - 2004
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 17 Trade Secrets Confidentiality non-disclosure agreement non-disclosure agreement implied (Oasis collage implied (Oasis collage – covert press photo – covert press photo infringed confidentiality) 1997 Breach remedy spring board damages spring board damages
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 18 Unfair Competition Misrepresentation passing off, trade dress passing off, trade dressReputation established position established position is basis of protection Mexican Baja 1000 road race THQ sued Activision for copyright and trade dress infringement - settled 2008
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 19 The Database Right British Horseracing Board v William Hill ECJ - not enough skill and investment for protection ECJ - not enough skill and investment for protection Mars v Teknowledge Database of coin parameters infringed Database of coin parameters infringed - no right to repair
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 20 Personality and Privacy Human rights/confidentiality – developing new rights developing new rights Princess Diana Princess Diana Hello! v OK! (Michael Douglas Hello! v OK! (Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta Jones) and Catherine Zeta Jones) Peggy Sue, Elvis, Marx Brothers (US) Peggy Sue, Elvis, Marx Brothers (US) Naomi Cambell Naomi Cambell JK Rowling JK Rowling Nicolas Sarkozy Nicolas Sarkozy Max Moseley Max Moseley John Terry John Terry
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 21 ‘Image Rights’
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 22 Special Rights? Public offence Resistance: Fall of Man (Manchester Cathedral) LittleBigPlanet (Islam) Hanuman: Boy Warrior (Hindu) Egypt (Pyramids) Bangladesh/India (Taj Mahal)
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 23 The Future On-line play and pay Electronic Arts - Battlefield Electronic Arts - Battlefield New platforms mobile phone mobile phone Gaming and gambling off shore off shoreHaptics Wii – ultrasonics – thoughts Wii – ultrasonics – thoughts
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 24 Virtual IPR Second Life - virtual infringement
iPC 2 © Barry Quest 2010 25 The End
IPC 2 © Barry Quest Basics of Intellectual Property Copyright Protection Copyright Protection for Games Barry Quest MA(Oxon), MRSC, CPA, EPA, MITMA.
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