Nintendo has gotten some bad press over their copyright claims on Youtube for a long time now. When it seemed that the heat was dying down, Nintendo goes and blocks the Kickstarter for Nintendo Entertainment System and Nintendo Famicom a Visual Compendium book. This is bringing even more heat to the Big N’s front door but are they right for doing so?
Okay, you may be thinking, what the hell? How can they do that? It is completely within their legal right to protect their intellectual properties- the question is, how far is too far?
They are claiming concerns over the use of a mark “that is confusingly similar to” their old Seal of Approval (who remembers that?). Also, they are claiming concerns over the use of images captured from playing Nintendo brand games (not Capcom or Konami games, but actual NINTENDO games such as Super Mario Bros 2).
The concern that Nintendo has over the game screens is that the book is apparently planned to be mostly those. Simply screen shots of the games with a small blurb about it. Apparently Nintendo has a problem with this.
Their claim cites many games from their own catalog, here instead of rewriting it I will simply quote it for your perusal (not sure if I will get a DMCA over that but let’s see anyhow).
“Description of copyrighted material: The copyrighted material includes images and fictional character depictions from Nintendo’s video games, including but not limited to, U.S. Copyright Reg. Nos. PA0000273028, supp. by PA0000547457 (Super Mario Bros.); PA0000427614, supp. by PA0000547456 (Super Mario Bros. 2); PA0000563454 (Super Mario Bros. 3); PA0000356140 (The Legend of Zelda); PA0000427613 (Zelda II – Adventure of Link); PA0000254906 (VS. Excitebike); PA0000260315 (VS. Hogan’s Alley); PA0000583907 (Yoshi(NES)); PA0000254151 (VS. Duck Hunt); PA0000366687 (Ice Hockey); PA0000356141 (Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out!!); PA0000564771 (Punch-Out!!); PA0000356142 (Metroid); and PA0000115040 (Donkey Kong). Publication of this book will further infringe these and other copyrights owned by Nintendo.”
So, where do you stand on this? Is Nintendo simply protecting their brand or are they going too far and doing more damage than the “offenders” ever could?