Following Lima Sky's and Stick Sports's decision to flex their respective legal muscles over the ‘Doodle’ and ‘Stick’ trade marks, the owner of the Tetris trade mark has also decided to protect its intellectual property.
Mario Karagiannis, also known as Karios, has received a takedown letter from Norris McLaughlin & Marcus, P.A. Attorneys at Law on behalf of The Tetris Company requesting the removal of his game Tetrada from the Windows Marketplace.
Karios has rejected accusations of trade mark infringement, arguing that Tetrada makes no reference to the Tetris trade mark and has challenged The Tetris Company’s claim that it holds a copyright over gameplay.
However, Karios has acknowledged that he is unlikely to be able to challenge the claim as he is a lone developer and a student of limited financial means.
In an emotive defence on his website, Karios writes, “Here I would like to state that I have never used the Tetris Logo in my game and the game name, Tetrada, is a greek word that means “four of a kind”. The game was a puzzle game using tetrominoes pieces, in a way that, according to my knowledge, has no patent. Also in my knowledge, the Tetris knowledge only holds a copyright on the Tetris name, which I never used and the Tetris Logo which I never used either.”
Karios also accuses The Tetris Company of bullying smaller developers, and issues a rallying cal.
“I extend an open invitation to other developers from the iOS platform, the Android platform as well as anyone else who has dealt with this behavior in the past to contact me and see if we can do something about it together.”
This is not the first time The Tetris Company has engaged in litigation. Last year 36 Tetris clones were removed from the Android Market.
This included nine that didn't use the Tetris name, including FallingBlocks. The developer of FallingBlocks agreed that his game was similar to Tetris, but like Karios, believed that gameplay could not be copyrighted.