Take-Two Interactive hits indie game It Takes Two with trademark claim

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Josef Fares' co-op indie title It Takes Two was forced to abandon its trademark after a claim by Take-Two Interactive, according to documents from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Take-Two filed the claim on October 26, 2020, and developer Hazelight Studios abandoned its trademark on March 30, 2021, four days after the game's launch. In a statement to Eurogamer, Hazelight acknowledged it had to abandon the trademark due to Take-Two's claim, said it remained hopeful the "ongoing disputes" could be resolved, but did not comment on how it affected the game's performance, or any plans to change the name for a sequel or future release.

Other documents from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office show Take-Two has an extensive history of filing claims like this, not just for the name Take-Two, but for anything even close to their subsidiaries or brands, including trademarks containing the words rockstar, social club, or bully. Examples include clothing brand Max Fayne, retailer Project 1920 for its slogan "Don't Be a Rockstar, Be a Legend" (which appears to be based on a quote attributed to Freddie Mercury), artist and holistic healer Jennifer Charton for her company Goddess Rockstar Arts, and business consultation firm Restaurant Rockstars LLC. There's even a claim against Obschestvo s ogranichennoy otvetstvennostyu "AytiReks Grupp Bel" for its logo, which is infringing on the Rockstar logo of a simple R. The offending logo can be seen below on the left, next to Rockstar's logo for comparison on the right.

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Earlier this year, Take-Two also took legal action against the GTA fan community for several mods, including the popular reverse-engineering projects.

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The Real Jdbye

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Those logos couldn't possibly look more different. They're not going to get anywhere with that claim, I don't know what they're smoking.
This though... For trademark claims, don't they have to prove that the branding/name could be confused with their own or is somehow harming their own? I never once thought It Takes Two was made by Take-Two and I don't think anyone else does either so I think they're reaching a bit. The system is so easy to abuse for profit though.
 

codezer0

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Take Two ruined Rockstar Games
Take two, and Rockstar, are one and the same. The Houser brothers are just that effing toxic.

Part of me is wondering what kind of intervention it's going to take, to boot those bastards out.

At this point in time, if Rockstar is a publicly traded company, if they're not implicitly complicit in their shitty behavior, the board of directors should be booting those idiots out. Otherwise it's going to be like Randy Pitchford with Gearbox.
 

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“It Takes Two” is literally a part of an idiom - “it takes two to tango”. Take Two Interactive has no legal standing here - the name of their company is derrived from a “second attempt”, aka “take two”, as used in the recording and movie industry. These phrases aren’t even related, not to mention that both are exceedingly common.

https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/it-takes-two-to-tango

This is legal trolling - Take Two would’ve taken a giant L in litigation, but Hazelight likely doesn’t have the funds to defend their trademark, and I doubt that EA would open their coffers and fund a legal battle that doesn’t make them money. How silly.
For starters, they shouldn’t be able to trademark fixed phrases. It used to be that an infringement of a trademark required the infringing content to also closely match the original font and spacing - nowadays even vague resemblance passes. Reminds me of Apple versus Apple, another hilarious example of multimillion dollar corporations fighting over an shape everyone is familiar with - a fucking apple.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apple_Corps_v_Apple_Computer

Yeah, if you don’t want your trademark “infringed upon”, maybe your logo shouldn’t be a damned fruit in the first place, guys.
Yeah that's just as bad. I'm assuming neither holds the trademark for "Apple".
What morons. Any judge that was worthy of the bench can see this is frivolous.
The problem is that really stupid ambiguous trademarks are granted. While Take Two Interactive is trolling here, they may very well hold a trademark for "Take Two". Of course this doesn't mean their trademark is being infringed upon, I can see them getting far enough for ut to settle.
 

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Yeah that's just as bad. I'm assuming neither holds the trademark for "Apple".
In theory both of them do, but in two different industries. It’s a super-convoluted story that involves multiple settlements and multiple supposed infringements of agreements until one judge who isn’t stupid released a ruling that more clearly defines their individual lanes.
 
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Guacaholey

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In theory both of them do, but in two different industries. It’s a super-convoluted story that involves multiple settlements and multiple supposed infringements of agreements until one judge who isn’t stupid released a ruling that more clearly defines their individual lanes.
It's just stupid that you can trademark "Apple" instead of "Apple Computers" or "Apple Corps". You should need very specific patents. Like "Take Two Interactive" should be a trademark, but "Take Two" shouldn't because of the idiom "It takes two to tango" and variations thereof. Out of curiosity I visited the US Patent and Trademark Office website and tons of people have trademarks for "Take Two" in different industries. We've got a recently abandoned "Take Two" trademark for a dairy substitute, a "take two" trademark for an accounting service, an abandoned "take two" trademark from 205h Century Fox, etc. It should be noted these are all word marks in different industries, and two are abandoned or dead, but the fact that such a vague, arguably generic, 2 word phrase can be trademarked at all is a huge red flag.
It's not that I don't hate Take-Two Interactive, but in this scenario, it's not really their fault. The US legal system requires Trademarks to be actively and litigiously defended from anything that could possibly be construed as similar.

I hate Take-Two as much as everyone else, but they're not the problem this time, the US is.
There's zero chance of anyone reasonably confusing "It Takes Two" with Take-Two Interactive though. We're not talking about a game using an established name like Pokémon that could confuse people (like bootleg "Pokémon Diamond" Telefang cartridges), or using a trademark phrase like "Gotta Catch 'em All" (or a knockoff of it), we're talking about half of a very well known idiom being used in a title. What if Capcom USA or Capcom Vancouver sued Tango Gameworks or Bethesda over trademark infringement because "The Evil Within" has the word "evil" in it, and Capcom owns the trademark for Resident Evil. That's the level of legal bullshit that's going on.

If you don't think it's that frivolous, they're suing somebody for the concept of using an R as their logo e en though it in no way resembles the Rockstar Games logo.

They really need to watch their steps, because I'd hate to see them lose a legitimate lawsuit because frivolous ones ruin their credibility. And yes, that is a real thing.
 
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AbyssalMonkey

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I disagree. Yes, they likely need to protect trademarks. But "It Takes Two" isn't infringing or being close to infringing on anything. We're not talking about people using the "Grand Theft Auto" or "Red Dead" trademarks without permission (or slightly modified titles). "It takes two to [action]" is a common saying. This is like them suing somebody over having the word "redemption" in a title. Imagine the Shawshank Redemption gets a remake and Take Two sues the production company. That's how stupid this is.
Failed once.
The problem is that really stupid ambiguous trademarks are granted. While Take Two Interactive is trolling here, they may very well hold a trademark for "Take Two". Of course this doesn't mean their trademark is being infringed upon, I can see them getting far enough for ut to settle.
Partially got it right the second time.
There's zero chance of anyone reasonably confusing "It Takes Two" with Take-Two Interactive though. We're not talking about a game using an established name like Pokémon that could confuse people (like bootleg "Pokémon Diamond" Telefang cartridges), or using a trademark phrase like "Gotta Catch 'em All" (or a knockoff of it), we're talking about half of a very well known idiom being used in a title. What if Capcom USA or Capcom Vancouver sued Tango Gameworks or Bethesda over trademark infringement because "The Evil Within" has the word "evil" in it, and Capcom owns the trademark for Resident Evil. That's the level of legal bullshit that's going on.

If you don't think it's that frivolous, they're suing somebody for the concept of using an R as their logo e en though it in no way resembles the Rockstar Games logo.

They really need to watch their steps, because I'd hate to see them lose a legitimate lawsuit because frivolous ones ruin their credibility. And yes, that is a real thing.
Failed again.

There was never any doubt that the lawsuit was frivolous. But it's only being filed because the US has a fun law that basically says "Don't touch me, no matter what." This is also the reason why Bethesda sued Mojang over "Scrolls". They have to show active effort to keep their trademark, or it's gonna be lost. Anybody can tell that the companies aren't related after 30 seconds of looking around, but that doesn't matter. All that matters is that they've used the name. Take-Two is well within their rights, and legally obligated to fight this, moreso than some other cases. Is it stupid? Yes. Is that their fault? No.

Use some perspective here. Do you really think they'd be filing this lawsuit, wasting their money, this company that will destroy games with microtransactions and release the same game for like, 10 years, all because it's still making money, to sue somebody over something stupid as this? They have investors to answer to. They would get taken to court by them for wasting money. The answer is that they are basically required to. I'm sure they'd rather not have to waste their money on something this dumb.

Stop attributing it to malice. They're a shithole company, but that's because of greed, not malice.
 

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Take two, and Rockstar, are one and the same. The Houser brothers are just that effing toxic.

Part of me is wondering what kind of intervention it's going to take, to boot those bastards out.

At this point in time, if Rockstar is a publicly traded company, if they're not implicitly complicit in their shitty behavior, the board of directors should be booting those idiots out. Otherwise it's going to be like Randy Pitchford with Gearbox.
If I'm correct, Dan Houser left R* a long time ago because he's not happy with how R* has gone. So far only the Sam Houser is the toxic personal slut of TakeTwo.
 

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Failed once.

Partially got it right the second time.

Failed again.

There was never any doubt that the lawsuit was frivolous. But it's only being filed because the US has a fun law that basically says "Don't touch me, no matter what." This is also the reason why Bethesda sued Mojang over "Scrolls". They have to show active effort to keep their trademark, or it's gonna be lost. Anybody can tell that the companies aren't related after 30 seconds of looking around, but that doesn't matter. All that matters is that they've used the name. Take-Two is well within their rights, and legally obligated to fight this, moreso than some other cases. Is it stupid? Yes. Is that their fault? No.

Use some perspective here. Do you really think they'd be filing this lawsuit, wasting their money, this company that will destroy games with microtransactions and release the same game for like, 10 years, all because it's still making money, to sue somebody over something stupid as this? They have investors to answer to. They would get taken to court by them for wasting money. The answer is that they are basically required to. I'm sure they'd rather not have to waste their money on something this dumb.

Stop attributing it to malice. They're a shithole company, but that's because of greed, not malice.
Except they've probably got lawyers on retainer for IP related legal issues.
 

codezer0

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If I'm correct, Dan Houser left R* a long time ago because he's not happy with how R* has gone. So far only the Sam Houser is the toxic personal slut of TakeTwo.
I want to believe that.

However, Kojima kept saying he was going to quit on metal gear solid after mgs2, but threw a hissy fit because people didn't immediately love Raiden.

Satoshi tajiri is said to have left Pokémon, yet his influence is still stained all over the core games and the series. Until the pokemon TV series no longer focused on Ash Ketchum, however, I can't believe that he doesn't have some lingering oversight on the property.
 

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I want to believe that.

However, Kojima kept saying he was going to quit on metal gear solid after mgs2, but threw a hissy fit because people didn't immediately love Raiden.

Satoshi tajiri is said to have left Pokémon, yet his influence is still stained all over the core games and the series. Until the pokemon TV series no longer focused on Ash Ketchum, however, I can't believe that he doesn't have some lingering oversight on the property.
Nah if he had amy influence we wouldn't be getting games that don't have every Pokémon programmed in.
 

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I want to believe that.

However, Kojima kept saying he was going to quit on metal gear solid after mgs2, but threw a hissy fit because people didn't immediately love Raiden.

Satoshi tajiri is said to have left Pokémon, yet his influence is still stained all over the core games and the series. Until the pokemon TV series no longer focused on Ash Ketchum, however, I can't believe that he doesn't have some lingering oversight on the property.
iirc satoshi tajiri only says yay or nay to ideas in core games after gen 2 he departed from development (which personally i feel attributed to pokemon core games turn to hot garbage personally though from pokemon's perspective trademark law should be held by the developer (Game Freak in this example) not the parent company same with Take 2 and GTA Rock* created GTA they should decide on what to do with it not the bastards at take 2
 
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