Some People Call Me The Space Marine . . . And Get Threatened By Games Workshop
M.C.A. Hogarth is a writer of many things, including science fiction.
You would think that it is difficult to draw frivolous legal threats and demands writing science fiction. You would be wrong. Hogarth wrote a book called Spots the Space Marine, only to find it yanked from Amazon, apparently based on a claim of trademark infringement by I-can't-believe-they-still-exist gaming institution Games Workshop. Games Workshop, it seems, told Amazon that they own the trademark to "Space Marine," not withstanding that (1) they don't own a trademark to it in the context of science fiction books, and (2) they couldn't, because the term has been in wide use in science fiction for the better part of a century.
Unprincipled and frivolous trademark threats chill speech just like defamation threats. Companies that make them should face consequences. Regrettably, Amazon will probably continue to pull books first and ask questions later.
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