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Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM

This document is Blizzard's "notice of opposition" to Valve's efforts to trademark "DOTA," to which Blizzard has long objected. This federal lawsuit follows indications that Blizzard is planning a retail release for their own DOTA game, which at one point was thought to be a StarCraft II modification. Blizzard filing lists the following reason for opposition: "Priority and likelihood of confusion."

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20. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 11:11 Yifes
 
ViRGE wrote on Feb 10, 2012, 11:03:
No more than AutoDesk owns Transformers because 3dsMax was used to assemble the models. Being the toolmaker confers no ownership of the finished product (unless there's a contract stating otherwise, i.e. the free version of Unreal Engine 3).

Blizzard certainly has no standing to own the DotA trademark. The only party that has any standing is Valve, and even then it's not immediately clear that they should get it.

I'd assume that it'd depend on the Warcraft 3 map editor EULA?
 
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19. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 11:09 RenownWolf
 
Only the lawyers will win... glad I'm married to one!

Also Valve has 2 people who worked one it, the first one who made it "Allstars" and the current maintainer. Icefrog and Eul or something (their names mean nothing to me).

There is a company called Dota Allstars LLC or similar that owns the Defense of the Ancients trademark that was done back around 2005 or similar. It is currently owned by Blizzard (they bought the company from somebody who also had a lot to do with the Dota allstars website).

It's a big fkin mess, and the easiest thing would be if Valve avoided the name... Blizzard does have a right on some level but at the same time they don't. Valve put their hand in the cookie jar and wanted to paint their name on it.

The Blizzard EULA also has something about mods and ownership... but I haven't seen it to comment on that.

As I started... the lawyers will win and the gamers will come away knowing that both wasted time and money and should have avoided the situation in the first place.
 
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18. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 11:08 Yifes
 
InBlack wrote on Feb 10, 2012, 10:57:
I know of at least one example of a Valve game that started out as a mod on a game IP that wasnt owned by them. Team Fortress.

BLizzard is making DOTA? Well thats news to me, I stand corrected then. How long has it been in development compared to Valve's version?

The big difference again is that TF had clear cut developers and Valve bought the entire team along with the IP.

Blizzard announced their version of DOTA in Blizzcon 2010, and I assume Valve's version has been in development longer.

 
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17. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 11:03 ViRGE
 
Red wrote on Feb 10, 2012, 10:25:
The person who created dota did so in blizzard's engine. It's certainly blizzard's more than valve's.
No more than AutoDesk owns Transformers because 3dsMax was used to assemble the models. Being the toolmaker confers no ownership of the finished product (unless there's a contract stating otherwise, i.e. the free version of Unreal Engine 3).

Blizzard certainly has no standing to own the DotA trademark. The only party that has any standing is Valve, and even then it's not immediately clear that they should get it.
 
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16. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 11:01 eRe4s3r
 
Except in this case its like calling your game "Deathmatch" or "Capture the Flag" or "Conquest"

Anyone stupid enough to try to trademark this would be shot down by dozens if not hundreds of other developers, and so will Valve in this case. Nobody has the right to the DOTA name, as its the name of a sub-genre more than it is the name of a specific game.

Valve simply trademarked shit that didn't belong to them from the get-go, it was an obvious troll aimed at Blizzard who has to sue, or they'd have to enforce valves copyright on starcraft/sc2/warcraft3 mods and maps. It'd be a clusterfuck of epicness all thanks to Valve being true dicks.
 
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15. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 11:00 Verno
 
Yifes wrote on Feb 10, 2012, 10:55:
The whole point is that NOBODY owns Dota. Anyone who wanted to make their own version could, and there were a million different variations floating around BNET. There were no centralized development for one team to hand over to another, except for the latest All-Stars variant of DOTA, through which Valve is trying to lay ownership claim over the entire IP.

I don't think the original map was released with an open license, that came later on but it's been a long time so *shrug*. I understand what you're saying in principle but I think that the courts will really have to decide who legally owns the IP at this point or if it's considered to be public domain. Hence my comment about it being a big mess.

I don't really consider anyone to be in the "right" here but I wonder if Icefrog deceived Valve about his ownership rights. If that's the case they should definitely just give up and rename, rebranding it would not be the end of the world or something particularly when they have Steam as a launch vehicle.
 
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14. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 10:57 InBlack
 
I know of at least one example of a Valve game that started out as a mod on a game IP that wasnt owned by them. Team Fortress.

BLizzard is making DOTA? Well thats news to me, I stand corrected then. How long has it been in development compared to Valve's version?
 
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13. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 10:55 Yifes
 
Verno wrote on Feb 10, 2012, 10:38:
At this point it's changed hands and developers so many times I think the courts are going to have sort it out. I really have no idea who is the wrong because we aren't privy to exactly how ownership was handed down over the years.

The whole point is that NOBODY owns Dota. Anyone who wanted to make their own version could, and there were a million different variations floating around BNET. There were no centralized development for one team to hand over to another, except for the latest All-Stars variant of DOTA, through which Valve is trying to lay ownership claim over the entire IP.

The only entity that even has a remotely legitimate claim on the name DOTA is Blizzard, depending on the details of the EULA for content made using Warcraft 3's map editor.
 
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12. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 10:44 Yifes
 
InBlack wrote on Feb 10, 2012, 10:34:
Obviously the people who originally created the MOD should get some credit. But when has that EVER happened in the history of our beloved hobby?? Valve has a long history of making games based on mods. They usually hire the team involved in the original MOD as well. I dont know about DOTA, but if Blizzard wanted to get on board with a standalone DOTA game they should have done so before Valve did. Right now they simply look like douchebags trying to protect an IP out of self-interest.

If on the other hand they developed their own version of a DOTA game, that would be a different matter. As far as I know they arent doing so.

First of all, Blizzard IS making their own version of DOTA.

Second, Valve's previous IP acquisitions were originally mods built on Valve's game engines. Valve usually hired the entire dev team and bought the entire studio making these games (ie. Turtle Rock Studios, makers of L4D), acquiring the IP rights in the process.

This time however, Valve hired one guy out of the many people who worked on the original DotA mod for Warcraft 3. Now they're trying to trademark DOTA and fuck over everyone else who's ever connected with the project. So yeah, Valve is the giant douchebag in the room here.
 
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11. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 10:41 Prez
 
fuck Blizzard.
Fuck Valve in this matter.

All of this just seems so stupid. Fuck everybody involved.

This comment was edited on Feb 10, 2012, 10:47.
 
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10. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 10:39 nin
 
If on the other hand they developed their own version of a DOTA game, that would be a different matter. As far as I know they arent doing so.

You're talking about Blizz? Blue says above:
If on the other hand they developed their own version of a DOTA game, that would be a different matter. As far as I know they arent doing so.

 
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9. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 10:38 Verno
 
Yifes wrote on Feb 10, 2012, 10:14:
Blizzard isn't trying to trademark DOTA. Blizzard is trying to prevent Valve from trademarking DOTA. Valve trying to steal an IP that is COMMUNITY created - that's what's despicably low in the first place.

Fuck Valve in this matter.

At this point it's changed hands and developers so many times I think the courts are going to have sort it out. I really have no idea who is the wrong because we aren't privy to exactly how ownership was handed down over the years. The original being a map for a Blizzard game really muddies the water as well, the whole thing is just a big mess.

I'm not sure why Blizzard cares specifically though, LoL proved that you can launch a successful competitor without the DotA name. Seems like an awful waste of money that lawyers will just gobble up.
 
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8. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 10:34 InBlack
 
Obviously the people who originally created the MOD should get some credit. But when has that EVER happened in the history of our beloved hobby?? Valve has a long history of making games based on mods. They usually hire the team involved in the original MOD as well. I dont know about DOTA, but if Blizzard wanted to get on board with a standalone DOTA game they should have done so before Valve did. Right now they simply look like douchebags trying to protect an IP out of self-interest.

If on the other hand they developed their own version of a DOTA game, that would be a different matter. As far as I know they arent doing so.
 
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7. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 10:26 Cutter
 
Valve really is in thee wrong here. Nothing wrong with what they're making, just change the damn name.
 
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6. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 10:25 Red
 
The person who created dota did so in blizzard's engine. It's certainly blizzard's more than valve's.  
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5. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 10:24 nin
 

This is despicably low.

How so?

 
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4. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 10:24 PHJF
 
Shouldn't it be DotA?  
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3. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 10:14 Yifes
 
InBlack wrote on Feb 10, 2012, 10:11:
As a fan of Blizzard's games I have to say this, fuck Blizzard. This is despicably low.

Blizzard isn't trying to trademark DOTA. Blizzard is trying to prevent Valve from trademarking DOTA. Valve trying to steal an IP that is COMMUNITY created - that's what's despicably low in the first place.

Fuck Valve in this matter.
 
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2. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 10:12 Yifes
 
About time someone stood up to Valve trying to trademark shit that doesn't belong to them.  
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1. Re: Blizzard Sues Over DOTA TM Feb 10, 2012, 10:11 InBlack
 
Im guessing Valve will fight it rather than change the name. They have a lot of money invested in the DOTA II game, besides they have a history of releasing games that started out as mods.

As a fan of Blizzard's games I have to say this, fuck Blizzard. This is despicably low.
 
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60 Replies. 3 pages. Viewing page 3.
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