Patents, trademark obfuscations, and "familiar but legally distinctive" logos. When gaming accessories company Dbrand began selling PS5 black skins in February, its website aggressively indicated that its efforts were "totally legal" and by everyone else. He wanted to "sue us". Now, of course, the company has had to change the design of its custom pages in response to Sony's legal threats. p>
Sony's threats aren't surprising, especially since the company sent a letter last November stating that it didn't want to customize the Control Panel console. But the back and forth raises important legal questions about patent protection, brand confusion, and who controls the aftermarket market for console parts. Sony Interactive Entertainment LLC's intellectual property reveals a number of issues the console maker sees with the "Darkplate" design that Dbrand sold earlier this week. The main factor was the distinctive look of the screens themselves, which match the PS5's flagship displays.
The message states:
Due to our customers' extensive marketing of the PS5 console, its commercial popularity, and extensive media coverage, the console's unique product configuration, including the lack of the two-related vertical limit The page is exclusively marked with SIE in consumers' minds and is a symbol of great goodwill.
Darkplates Dbrand, which "duplicates the design of the SIE-protected product" and thus "infringes the intellectual property rights of our customers in the design of the featured product."Ad Another angle in the black version of the original Dbrand Darkplate layout.
This is perhaps Sony's strongest legal point, according to Richard Hugh, a Michigan attorney and cyber law enforcement official. The shape of the PS5, including its screen, is legally protected in the United States by a design patent and internationally by Industrial Design Protection. "These structures protect the 'technical and decorative' (i.e., non-functional) parts of the console design," says Hugh Lars.
For full protection, a patent must first be obtained. Sony didn't file a US design patent for the PS5's shape until November 6, 2020, just days before the console was released. The patent was finally granted by the US Patent and Trademark Office on October 5, which may explain Sony's decision to threaten Dbrand after months of sales.
Surprisingly, Sony's letter to Dbrand did not mention this. The Special Design Patent, a startling omission announced by Dbrand in response to Reddit:
Under Canadian law [Dbrand is a Canadian company], the defendant is guilty of infringement to prove that the defendant has infringed a particular patent. Since Sony did not claim any design patents issued by C&D—we focused instead on pending patents and many other complaints—we focused on whether an organization was allowed to sell parts for devices it consumed.
Loss of Shape
Dbrand has continued to compare himself to the aftermarket. "As a consumer, you have the right to use any parts to modify, upgrade or repair your F-150," the company says. Shouldn't you be allowed to play on your PlayStation 5?Advertising
This is generally true. But because of the design patent, any Dbrand alternative page would have to show a significant deviation from the shape of PS5 screens to avoid the alleged infringement, Hugh said. Dallas attorney Mark Mittenitis told Ars that Dbrand's replacement pages would only be allowed if "the PS5's design isn't exactly the same." The dark panels may have failed. "I think the original Dark Plate product may have infringed Sony's patent," Hugh said. src="https://safirsoft.com/picsbody/2110/11256-2.jpg" alt="https://safirsoft.com PS5 Extension or IP Violation? The Law Behind "Dark Slabs" Dbrand" srcset="https://cdn.arstechnica.net/ wp-content/uploads/2021/10/dbrand4.png 2x "> Zoom/Design Dbrand"Darkplate 2.0" differs from Sony's patent.
After a short hiatus earlier this week, Dbrand is working on its legal issues with Darkplates 2.0. This product is marketed with an interesting slogan "Matt Lawyers". Dbrand says the new design has "cut corners" with a rounded top edge and new slots that make it easier to distinguish the product from the PS5. "We may be in prison with maximum security until the end of the year, but at least your PlayStation 5 will have the undisputed original design." Change I personally think Dbrand has sufficiently grasped the size and shape of his motion, but it is reasonable that the mind could be different, and I can never claim to be able to read the thoughts of a judge or a jury. "Looking at the problem," said Hugh.
PS5 extension or IP breach? The Law Behind "Dark Slabs" Dbrand
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