Are you secretly Brucer Banner (AKA The Incredible Hulk)? If so, you may want to skip this article as it will make you angry, very angry. And I don’t want any reason not to like you.
King, the publisher behind the massively popular Candy Crush Saga, has trademarked the word “candy.” They don’t own all rights to the word “candy.” You can still go to your local grocery store and ask the shopkeep for a big bag of candy. And you can still joke about how something is easier than taking candy from a baby. A huge proportion of this country’s strippers will also not have to change their stage names.
Sadly, King’s trademark covers practically everything else.
According to US Patent and Trademark Office, King’s trademark covers hundreds of items including “video game software,” “spectacles cases,” clothing of all kinds, “amusement parks,” all educational services or workshops, and “downloadable music files.” They actually believe that anyone that uses the word “candy” in a music file should have to pay them a royalty fee. And just in case you thought you were safe across the Atlantic, the publisher has also been granted a trademark on the word “candy” by the European Union’s Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (Trade Marks and Designs) as well.
Surprisingly, few games actually use the word “candy” in their title, but according to Gamezebo, King has already sent cease and desist orders to those that do on the iOS App Store.
However, King’s victory (if you can call it that) is likely to be short-lived. According to the USPTO, their trademark has been approved, but not yet been published for opposition. And when it is, I imagine that the makers of Candy Land (which was first published in 1945) will have a problem with it. As they, and we all, should.