Are you a Candy Crush Saga addict? You're not alone. The popular game has been downloaded a startling 500 million times since its initial release in 2012. 500 million! That's a whole lot of candy crushed!
The developers behind the game, King, want Candy Crush to remain as appealing as it ever was, too, and that's why they have successfully trademarked the word 'candy.'
How Can You Trademark Candy?
King has a lot of competitor gaming companies out there. Most of those game developers are looking to piggy-back on Candy Crush fame, so those developers make similar-looking games and use the word 'candy' to fool gamers. For obvious reasons, this angers King, and has forced the company to seek a trademark in Europe. Now, any other gamer wishing to use the word 'Candy' in an game that attempts to mimic Candy Crush will be turned down.
For now, King's trademark only applies within the EU. However, the gaming company has asked the U.S. Trademarks office for the same trademark. So far, the trademarks office has not replied, but there's little reason why the word 'candy' can't or shouldn't be trademarked as owned by King in the U.S. too. But, the trademarked 'candy' word doesn't just apply to games - it also applies to clothing.
Apple Steps In
Apple has started to send off emails to game developers that have the word 'candy' in any gaming title. If a game includes the word 'candy' and is in the App Store, Apple will aim to take that game down.
Why is Apple stepping in? It seems as though the company wants to make a statement about trademarks and infringing on gaming rights. The best way to do this, it seems, is to show game developers the the company stands firmly behind King.
But, some gaming developers aren't happy about this new decision. For gaming companies that have had games in the app store for a long time, getting a letter from Apple related to the trademark issue is a slap in the face. Plus, some gaming companies legitimately use the word 'candy,' and aren't trying to cash in on the Candy Crush fame. So, what's a developer to do?
For now, nothing. Apple makes a ton of money from games like Candy Crush Saga, so the company is going to stand behind the money-makers. It might be best to choose another word for your game title if you were thinking about the sweet stuff.
It Is Fair?
For a lot of app developers, the new trademark simply isn't fair. Developers argue that the word 'candy' is broad, and has been used for some time to describe certain games. Preventing developers from using this name is really crossing the line, developers argue.
But, for now, new games with the word 'candy' in the title can't be created and added to the app store. Retailers should be careful too, since the same trademark protection applies to clothing!
What do you think of this new trademark? Is it fair to trademark a word like 'candy?'