Addleshaw Goddard

UK 200 2014 position: 22

Mattel out on the tiles: Scrabble v Scramble

J W Spear & Sons, part of the Mattel Group, was the owner of a three-dimensional trademark registration for square, tile shapes, commonly known as ‘Scrabble’ tiles.

Zynga launched a digital game called SCRAMBLE, which depicted Scrabble tiles within its game.

Mattel took action against Zynga for trademark infringement and Zynga counterclaimed for revocation of the trademark. Zynga obtained summary judgment on the grounds that Mattel’s trademark fell foul of Article 2 of the Trade Marks Directive (2008/95/EC). Article 2 requires that a trademark may consist of any signs capable of being graphically represented…

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