Bethesda Drops Trademark Notice on Minecraft’s Notch

It’s a litigious world these days, and companies are well known for issuing terse legal statements when their trademarks are violated. Of course, in the process some pretty ridiculous things can happen.

For example, there’s this Twitter post from well-known Minecraft creator Notch. As we’ve mentioned before, he’s working on a digital trading card game called ‘Scrolls.’ Well, apparently Bethesda’s lawyers aren’t very happy with that name, and they’ve sent Notch a letter claiming that the name ‘Scrolls’ infringes on their Elder Scrolls trademark. They also claim that the name will cause gamers to confuse Notch’s game with Skyrim. Says Notch:

Just got a letter from Bethesta’s lawyers. They claim “Scrolls” infringes on their trademark and everyone will confuse it with Skyrim.

Now, I’m not one to begrudge folks a chance to protect their intellectual property, but this seems to be to be a bit ridiculous. It’s not as though the name actually confuses gamers, If you saw The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and another game called Scrolls, would you be confused? Furthermore, they are two completely different games. If you were shopping for Skyrim and saw a trading card game, I don’t think you’d somehow believe you’d found what you sought.

Hopefully, this will just turn out to be a case of an overzealous IP lawyer trying too hard to do his job, and Bethesda will pull this silly notice. But since you never know what may happen, we’ll keep an ear to the ground for you.

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5 Comments on Bethesda Drops Trademark Notice on Minecraft’s Notch

Kyle W.

On August 5, 2011 at 2:09 pm

It’s been a long time since I’ve heard people refer to a “The Elder Scrolls” game as anything but its suffix. Maybe Arena not so much, but whenever I hear discussions it’s always “Daggerfall”, “Morrowind”, “Oblivion”, “Skyrim”, and when it does actually come up, it’s always “Elder Scrolls”, never “Scrolls” that it’s referred to by.


On August 5, 2011 at 3:00 pm

This is a really terrible headline. It implies that the legal action has been dropped (usual nomenclature for the dismissal or retraction of a legal case) by Bethesda.

Your title actually says the opposite of what you intended to say.


On August 5, 2011 at 7:13 pm

the comment means that they are dropping it on them such as dropping a pencil also im pretty sure the last sentence was closest to the reason lol

Oscar W.

On August 6, 2011 at 9:03 am

This is really ridiculous, since I never would refer anything not named “The Elder Scrolls” to exactly that – the elder scrolls. It’s pretty obvious that if you have a trademark you keep on using that for a serie of games, as for example Warcraft (which they used as an argument to sue Mojang) and the name Scrolls doesn’t make me think of The Elder Scrolls at all.


On August 7, 2011 at 2:09 am

Now let’s make a games called “Elder”.