Starting a business can be exhausting
Despite efforts, things can slip through the cracks.
I created an improv party some time last year. It’s been a blur.
A trademark was filed for the game one month before our website went live.
Yesterday a company emailed me informing me that we were using their trademark for our game, and since the games are so similar they feel that there is legal grounds to protect their asset.
I worked on the game for a period of time and sunk countless hours on it. Pretty flatly, this sucks.
It’s literally just a name for us, one that I chose and that I liked, but ultimately just a name.
When I started, the name looked wide open. Now, it’s less so. I feel that if I had moved faster and lost more sleep it could have made it to market fast enough.
But this is all a lesson to be learned, not a bully to beat up. Kiara isn’t nearly so conflict-averse it seems, opting to fighting them to keep the name since we are the first ones with legitimate sales has something to it, but legal battles are always more costly than they should be.
It’s far less expensive to just find a new name, redo all the assets, website pages, and how to play video, than to possibly fight in litigation.
We didn’t start this to get into fights lol
I should have checked, or trademarked the term when we were ready.
Truly, I didn’t expect this to happen, but with a name that isn’t 100% unique and trademarkable something like this could happen. Murphy's law can be fucking brutal.
Thankfully, the other company had the grace to reach out, and despite threatening legal action, reassured that they don’t want a legal battle over this.
I was able to get into contact with the manufacturer, and due to the backlog of the Chinese new year the job had not started.
Now I have a chance to fix an embarrassing mistake. (I found one word misspelled after sending it to the printer. It was embarassing.)
The game is done, and literally in the process of being completed, but in the world of trademarks it isn’t about being the first to market as I naively believed.
One last point, is that if two games of very similar theming and same name can be incepted and implemented within months of each other independently, with a name like that it is sure to continually happen.
Now there’s nothing left to do but try to brush the chip off my shoulder, and put in the updates needed as quickly as possible.
I’ll be eating my sour grapes and getting drunk off them too.
Hold that thought, I need to go check the trademark for Rough Draft!