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Blizzard sues Valve

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The idea of them attempting to trademark DotA initially was really questionable, and everyone was wondering what Blizzard was going to do about it. The game is somewhat close to entering an open beta I imagine, so Blizzard decides to strike right before then. It makes sense. As far as anyone should be considered, the name is either public domain or belonging to Blizzard; certainly not owned or trademark-able by Valve.
 
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The idea of them attempting to trademark DotA initially was really questionable, and everyone was wondering what Blizzard was going to do about it. The game is somewhat close to entering an open beta I imagine, so Blizzard decides to strike right before then. It makes sense. As far as anyone should be considered, the name is either public domain or belonging to Blizzard; certainly not owned or trademark-able by Valve.

But it is trademarked which is why Blizzard is putting court up.

Although Blizzard already have trademark via Dota-Allstars
 
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New article made by Chewbecca for those who still dosen't understand.
That was possibly one of the worst articles related to DOTA I've ever read. Not only is half of the actual relevant information missing, but the timeline is thrown off and it doesn't properly explain anything.

That article is misleading at best, and provides absolutely zero background information as a basis for context.
The idea of them attempting to trademark DotA initially was really questionable, and everyone was wondering what Blizzard was going to do about it. The game is somewhat close to entering an open beta I imagine, so Blizzard decides to strike right before then. It makes sense. As far as anyone should be considered, the name is either public domain or belonging to Blizzard; certainly not owned or trademark-able by Valve.
Why would Blizzard own it?

Icefrog who has been coding all of the latest updates for the past several years since Guinsoo left (who tbh didn't do a hell of alot) worked on both HoN and DOTA2, and without him DOTa actually wouldn't be what it is today.

You can argue till the cows come home that without Guinsoo DOTA may or may not be as popular, but the that's simply hearsay. What we 100% know for sure is that DOTA is the way it is today because of Icefrog and the changes and updates he has been doing.

If there is a single person who deserves the rights to DOTA, it would be either Eul or IceFrog, nobody else.

But it is trademarked which is why Blizzard is putting court up.

Although Blizzard already have trademark via Dota-Allstars

They have that trademark only because they purchased the website.

RIOT games (who developed League of Legends with the help of Pendragon & Guinsoo) bought it from Pendragon, then sold it to Blizzard. You think it's a co-incidence that Blizzard filed the suit just weeks after purchasing the DOTA-Allstars website?

I wouldn't be surprised if Pendragon sold the website knowing full well that Blizzard would purchase it and use it to try and stop DOTA2.

I remember reading the message he put up on DOTA-Allstars the day he shut it down because IceFrog left to consult with S2 Games for Heroes of Newerth. He's a Ducking sook, a pathetic crybaby, and he just wants to be head of a massive community again.
 
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Blizzard being sneaky and gay all put aside. They do have a VALID argument regardless of how you all feel about it. :p

Blizzard claiming ownership over DOTA is like Adobe claiming ownership over every flash game in existence.

Wc3 was the platform for it, just like a piece of paper is a platform for writing. If you write an entire movie script, does the paper company own the rights to your movie because it's written on their paper?
 
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Blizzard claiming ownership over DOTA is like Adobe claiming ownership over every flash game in existence.

Wc3 was the platform for it, just like a piece of paper is a platform for writing. If you write an entire movie script, does the paper company own the rights to your movie because it's written on their paper?

Wc3 may only be a platform for the concept of DOTA, but in the end of the day, DOTA is a modification for Wc3. If the game was never produced, dota would never have existed. Not to mention, "Defense of the ancients" is referencing the lore from Warcraft 3, which is owned and developed by Blizzard. Their argument is logical, and whether you want to admit it or not. They have more claim to DOTA than Valve certainly does. You silly austard :p.
 
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Why would Blizzard own it?
It really depends on Blizzard's ToS and ToU in this scenario. It is possible that, via their terms, they could (attempt to) claim ownership, and thus trademark rights, over all mods, including the names of the mods. Of course, this more than likely isn't the case, and I certainly am not going to go reading through legal documents for this occasion.

That said, it is also possible that the original name is, if initially legally handled correctly, trademarked to one of the original DotA owners.


The scenario that Valve is in is a bit sticky imo. It will be interesting to see what happens. At the very least, they surely do/should not have trademark rights.
 
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Wc3 may only be a platform for the concept of DOTA, but in the end of the day, DOTA is a modification for Wc3. If the game was never produced, dota would never have existed. Not to mention, "Defense of the ancients" is referencing the lore from Warcraft 3, which is owned and developed by Blizzard. Their argument is logical, and whether you want to admit it or not. They have more claim to DOTA than Valve certainly does. You silly austard :p.

The "ancients" that you protect are a tree and the frozen throne. In DOTA2, the tree is a well and the frozen throne is a fire pit.

None of that follows any sort of Blizzard lore.

With that gone, all you're doing is arguing that Blizzard owns the word "Ancients" as part of their IP. Which they do not.

Not to mention your argument can still very easily be applied to the Adobe & flash comparisons i made. Without flash, there would be no flash games. In addition, every "flash" game is using the word "flash" which actually IS a registered trademark.

It really depends on Blizzard's ToS and ToU in this scenario. It is possible that, via their terms, they could (attempt to) claim ownership, and thus trademark rights, over all mods, including the names of the mods. Of course, this more than likely isn't the case, and I certainly am not going to go reading through legal documents for this occasion.

That said, it is also possible that the original name is, if initially legally handled correctly, trademarked to one of the original DotA owners.


The scenario that Valve is in is a bit sticky imo. It will be interesting to see what happens. At the very least, they surely do/should not have trademark rights.
According to the exact suit Blizzard filled with the patents office - "Blizzard doesn't claim any ownership of Dota concepts, design, or the mod itself – only that the EULA states that the underlying game engine, art assets, et cetera are all still owned by Blizzard."

That makes no sense, because all of the sprites have been re-made from scratch, most now looking nothing like they originally did. The engine is completely different too. There is nothing there for them to claim ownership to.
 
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The "ancients" that you protect are a tree and the frozen throne. In DOTA2, the tree is a well and the frozen throne is a fire pit.

None of that follows any sort of Blizzard lore.

With that gone, all you're doing is arguing that Blizzard owns the word "Ancients" as part of their IP. Which they do not.

Not to mention your argument can still very easily be applied to the Adobe & flash comparisons i made. Without flash, there would be no flash games. In addition, every "flash" game is using the word "flash" which actually IS a registered trademark.

Still. DOTA2 originated from DOTA quite obviously and paved the giant metaphorical road. Now read this.

And remember, my argument here is that Blizzard's argument is valid. Lol

Blizzards Argument said:
Blizzard And The Warcraft World Editor
7. Blizzard provides to every purchaser of Warcraft III a powerful and fullfeatured
software program known as the "World Editor." The World Editor enables
members of the public to use Warcraft III's underlying software and graphical art assets,
including the character art, sounds and terrain models of the underlying game to create
custom items, maps, characters, environments and campaigns (also known as a "modification" or "mod"). A user also can use the World Editor to create custom artificial intelligence scripts for computer-controlled units, change the placement of the camera, and modify the strength or abilities of individual units. Once a Warcraft III mod is complete, the World Editor permits users to save the mod as a small computer file that can be shared with other players to allow them to play the mod using their own Warcraft III software. Mod files made with the World Editor cannot be played without first installing and loading a copy of Blizzard's Warcraft III game software.

8. Use of the World Editor (and Warcraft III) is subject to the terms of an
End User License Agreement ("EULA") between Blizzard and users of Warcraft III. The EULA sets forth the relative rights and responsibilities of the parties regarding their use of Warcraft III and the World Editor. The EULA is displayed to users during the installation of Warcraft III and the World Editor. All users of Warcraft III and the World Editor must consent to the EULA by clicking on a button labeled "Accept." If the user declines to assent, he or she may click a button labeled "Decline," at which point the installation will terminate, denying access to the user. If a user declines to accept the EULA, he or she may request and obtain a full refund from Blizzard of the purchase price.

9.
the EULA, a limited, non-exclusive license to install Warcraft III and the World Editor
on his or her computer, use the game for noncommercial entertainment purposes, and
distribute Warcraft III mods to other users via the Battle.net game service. Warcraft III's
EULA clearly specifies that all underlying intellectual property rights in and to Warcraft
III are owned by Blizzard: "All title, ownership rights, and intellectual property rights in
and to the Program and any and all copies thereof (including, but not limited to, any
titles, computer code, themes, objects, characters, character names, stories, dialog, catch
phrases, locations, concepts, artwork, animations, sounds, musical compositions, audiovisual
effects, methods of operation, moral rights, any related documentation, and
`applets' incorporated into the Program) are owned by Blizzard or its licensors."

10. The EULA prohibits the use of Warcraft III or the World Editor for any
commercial purpose without Blizzard's prior written consent. In addition, the EULA
restricts any distribution of "New Materials [defined as modifications of Warcraft III
created using the World Editor] on a stand-alone basis... through any and all distribution
channels, including, but not limited to, retail sales and on-line electronic distribution
without the express written consent of Blizzard."
DotA
11. Among the most popular Warcraft III mods is "Defense of the Ancients,"
commonly referred to, and known by consumers, as "DotA," "Dota," and "DOTA"
(collectively, "DotA"). DotA is a Warcraft III scenario (or "map") that allows players to
5
play a version of Warcraft III in which they compete against each other using various
Warcraft III characters, spells, and items. The title "Defense of the Ancients," or
"DotA," is a reference to the Warcraft III characters known as the "Ancients," since the
primary objective of the game is to either defend or destroy (depending upon which team
the player is on) the Ancient known as the Tree of Life.
12. DotA first was developed in 2003 using Blizzard's World Editor. Over
the years, under license from Blizzard, numerous versions or iterations of DotA have
been distributed to the public, including the popular version "DotA AllStars"
(collectively, the "DotA Mods").
13.
independently of Warcraft III. From a technical standpoint, the DotA mods are small
computer files that use the Warcraft III "extension" .w3x. The DotA Mods cannot be
opened, accessed, played, or used in any manner without the user having first installed
Warcraft III and assented to the Warcraft III EULA. From the user's standpoint, the
DotA Mods are Warcraft III scenarios, or "maps," that users can loaded into Warcraft III
and enable them to play Warcraft III in a slightly different manner from the original
game. The DotA Mods use the same game engine, graphical elements, artwork, sound
recordings and user interface of Warcraft III. All of the elements of the DotA Mods,
including the heroes, items, leveling system, abilities, spells, fighting mechanics,
environments, and structures, are from Warcraft III. All or nearly all of the models,
textures, animations, ability or spell effects, and icons are from Warcraft III. Further,
many of the names, sounds, and character icons of the heroes in the DotA Mods are the
same as those used by Warcraft III characters. All of these elements were utilized by the
DotA Mods under license from Blizzard and pursuant to the EULA.
6
14. Since its release in 2003, the DotA Mods have been downloaded and
played by hundreds of thousands of people throughout the United States and the world
via the Warcraft III game software and Blizzard's Battle.net system. The DotA Mods can
be played only after a user has installed Warcraft III onto his or her computer, assented to
the EULA, launched the game software (at which time the user is presented with the
Warcraft III game screen and Blizzard logo), and entered Blizzard's "Battle.net "
multiplayer online system. At all times, the DotA Mods have been marketed, advertised,
and promoted as Warcraft III scenarios that require purchase and installation of Warcraft
III and knowledge of Warcraft III's gameplay mechanics, user interface, and on-screen
display. The fact that the DotA Mods are "mods" of Warcraft III and that to be played
the user must first purchase Warcraft III is well-known and well-publicized throughout
the United States and the world.
 
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According to the exact suit Blizzard filled with the patents office - "Blizzard doesn't claim any ownership of Dota concepts, design, or the mod itself – only that the EULA states that the underlying game engine, art assets, et cetera are all still owned by Blizzard."

That makes no sense, because all of the sprites have been re-made from scratch, most now looking nothing like they originally did. The engine is completely different too. There is nothing there for them to claim ownership to.

How doesn't what I said make sense? I gave two plausible options, while also saying that I personally was not going to go look specifically at the terms. I see that you did; so thanks, I suppose - that clears that up.

As I said in the second part of my post, if the original creator of the mod correctly trademarked the DotA mod, then he should have legal rights to the name, correct? Which brings up the wonders of the reasoning behind Blizzard's lawsuit, as it seems that they should perhaps not be meddling with this.
 
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@ Trav - Sure, that's the agreement that we each make with Blizzard. But the DOTA2 developers didn't enter into said agreement with Blizzard, they are simply coding a game based off another game which was made with Blizzard's Warcraft III map editor. They specifically are under no contract or agreement with Blizzard. Any agreement that Euls or Guinsoo or Icefrog entered into when they installed Warcraft 3 is between them and Blizzard, it does not include Valve.

So Blizzard now has to prove to a court that the "Ancients" in DOTA (which is not a word, it is an acronym) is specifically referring to Blizzard lore otherwise they have no case. Also, when Valve trademarked "DOTA', they did so as an actual word. So you now have Blizzard not only trying to prove that "ancients" is their IP, but they also have to prove that is what Valve was implying when they registered "DOTA" as a full word - NOT as an acronym and NOT as "Defence of the Ancients".

This is pretty much why it's such a huge problem - Because the Warcraft 3 map is "Defence of the ancients" and Blizzard owns the website dota-allstars.com which we know is an acronym for "defence of the ancients", but that is not what Valve trademarked. Valve trademarked DOTA as a full and complete word, not as an acronym.

Throw that in with the fact that almost nothing in DOTA2 looks the same, is called the same thing, or that the game even has the same name... And you're looking at a sketchy case at best for Blizzard. They absolutely do NOT have a "valid argument".

@ timebomb -
I said what they're doing doesn't make sense, i wasn't talking about your post.
 
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The fact remains that the DotA name is associated with Blizzard content, it's level design, heroes etc. Where mods like Counter Strike included a lot of new and original content, DotA has very little of this. The game is still very much WC3. This is not just using the engine to create a game, this is using the game and introducing a new way of playing it.

With flash, Adobe created the foundation, but the content is completely original.


So no matter how you look at it, Dota is very much WC3.
While no one is denying that Dota 2 is a new game with new designs etc, the name is instantly linked to Blizzard content.
 
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Valve are complete Aholes for trying to copyright it, plan and simple. Frankly it's now a genre more than any one game, and a company should not own the entire genre. It would be like me trademarking mmorpg. As soon as I got it I could effectively block any mmorpg, because make no mistake valve will happily block other dota games.

This isn't about Blizz wanting to own the trademark for themselves, because frankly they could have done that as soon as dota became popular. In this instance Blizz have the high moral ground, they don't want anyone to own it thus letting innovation happen.


Oh and the creators of the mod have no legal leg to stand on. They don't own anything, as soon as you agree to releasing a mod Blizz own it. It's been like that for a long, long time. It's probably the main reason Blizz lets people mod their games tbh, they let players use their engine while taking the rights to the mod itself (originally I think it was so people couldn't charge for mods btw).

So yeah, Blizz own DOTA, the same, the game, and the entire intellectual property. If they wanted I'd bet they could quite easily shut down LoL and HoA, let alone DOTA2, but they don't want to do that as it would make them seem like pricks. But trying to steal the name? Yeah, I'm well on the side of Blizz on this, and frankly every gamer should be too.
 
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1, Any mod is not the legal right of the origanal game/company unless created in agreement with the developers and game/company.

2, IceFrong being the lead owner of DOTA has right to claim the name. Why he was not the creator as the video clearly states ownership was passed to him there for giving him legal right.

3, Blizzard have no right to the name as a mod is not legally owned by the game/company it was created for or used as a platform to run on.

4, Dragon owns no right as they gave up any form of co ownership that was possible to use a legal battle when they gave up working with the dota community owned by icefrog.

There for,
Due to the fact that the name is a mod developed and owned by IceFrog he has full legal rights in regard to how the name is used there for giving valve rights if agreed by icefrog. The only person who can legally argue with this the origanal creator of the dota mod but it is proven and can be found easily via google that he gave up all ownership when he passed on the mod to the next lead developer.

I highly doubt valve will lose as unless blizzard or dragon can prove that they have any legal right to the name of DOTA they have no case. And I will aslo remember that if you watch the video it is clearly said the name DOTA was created by the fans there for meaning no legal corperation held rights to the name. This means legally DOTA is unregistered and well in the law no other company has ever claimed rights to it so valve have every legal right. Also no other stand alone game is called DOTA.

----
Or to make it simple,

Mental quits ragezone and passes its development and ownership to Lee.
Lee now legally owned Ragezone and all legal responsibility for it.
Mental there for can not return 5 years later say ragezone belongs to me give me it or I wil sue you.
 
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Blizzard aren't trying to trademark DoTA for themselves, they're trying to keep it in the public domain as it has been for the last 7 years. Valve made a douchebag move by trying to trademark it, thus preventing any other company/individual from using the term DoTA.

Valve knew the name was public domain before they decided to call their new game DoTA 2, so they can't really cry about it now can they. Blizzard are sticking up for the little man here.
 
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Blizzard aren't trying to trademark DoTA for themselves, they're trying to keep it in the public domain as it has been for the last 7 years. Valve made a douchebag move by trying to trademark it, thus preventing any other company/individual from using the term DoTA.

Valve knew the name was public domain before they decided to call their new game DoTA 2, so they can't really cry about it now can they. Blizzard are sticking up for the little man here.

Ok,
Please explain how the name is public domain.

What is Dota,
Dota is a game mod for world of warcraft that is owned and developed by icefrog a valve employee. Dota is shorthand for Defence Of The Ancients.

Genre,
DOTA is not a genre of game such as FPS, RPG, MMO. An example would be League Of Ledgends, This game would not be classed as a DOTA game nor would it be placed in any genre under the name of DOTA. It would be placed as an RTS or aRTS.

Due to the fact that DOTA is owned and developed by icefrog under the full name of Defence of The Ancients the term DOTA simply means Defence of the Ancients. Any attempt to use it as a genre would be incorrect. This means that DOTA is not public domain as some may assume as it has no releavence outside of Defence Of The Ancients and to use it in regard to any other content would incorrect.


In the end,
Valve is not likely to lose unless you can prove that DOTA stands for or means anything else other than Defence Of The Ancients. Something that you will find impossible to do legally.
 
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It was public domain because the name could be used without impunity, Blizzard stated this was as they wanted it so the community could continue to use the term DoTA for mods etc.

Icefrog DID NOT create DoTA, he merely took over the project sometime after its inception. DoTA isn't an RTS either, it's what is called a MOBA - Multiplayer Online Battle Arena. Neither was it developed for "World of WarCraft, it was developed for WarCraft III using the Map Editor supplied with the game. On a side note the EULA for using said Map Editor makes the mod and all terms associated with it technically Blizzards but we'll put that to one side for the moment.

If Blizzard was being greedy, they'd have trademarked the name long ago and prohibited Valve from naming their game DoTA 2, which they didn't. They have only acted now to BLOCK the trademarking of the name DoTA by Valve so that it can continue to be used by the community. Valve are being greedy in trying to take a term that is considered public domain and trademarking it for profit.

Calling the game DoTA 2 was ok with Blizzard, but stopping other people (including Blizzard) from using the term is not.

Blizzard I believe will be successful with this blocking motion, and I really hope they are. Valve are being greedy and taking what was once a community project and milking it for all its worth.
 
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I don't see the point in this either. Like you said, they are just being greedy and want to cash in on the name.

Valve should have just used a new name, I mean why didn't they anyway, look at LoL and HoN, these are well known games and extremely popular. They didn't need to give themselves DotA names.

And while MOBA is the proper name for the genre, many people still speak about DotA for the whole genre, which does make sense to a certain part, since DotA created the genre.

In the end, like been said in this topic before. Blizzard doesn't want the name for themselves, the just want the name to be usable for whoever wants to use it, including Valve.
 
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1, Any mod is not the legal right of the origanal game/company unless created in agreement with the developers and game/company.

2, IceFrong being the lead owner of DOTA has right to claim the name. Why he was not the creator as the video clearly states ownership was passed to him there for giving him legal right.

3, Blizzard have no right to the name as a mod is not legally owned by the game/company it was created for or used as a platform to run on.

4, Dragon owns no right as they gave up any form of co ownership that was possible to use a legal battle when they gave up working with the dota community owned by icefrog.

There for,
Due to the fact that the name is a mod developed and owned by IceFrog he has full legal rights in regard to how the name is used there for giving valve rights if agreed by icefrog. The only person who can legally argue with this the origanal creator of the dota mod but it is proven and can be found easily via google that he gave up all ownership when he passed on the mod to the next lead developer.

I highly doubt valve will lose as unless blizzard or dragon can prove that they have any legal right to the name of DOTA they have no case. And I will aslo remember that if you watch the video it is clearly said the name DOTA was created by the fans there for meaning no legal corperation held rights to the name. This means legally DOTA is unregistered and well in the law no other company has ever claimed rights to it so valve have every legal right. Also no other stand alone game is called DOTA.

----
Or to make it simple,

Mental quits ragezone and passes its development and ownership to Lee.
Lee now legally owned Ragezone and all legal responsibility for it.
Mental there for can not return 5 years later say ragezone belongs to me give me it or I wil sue you.

Point 1 is wrong. Blizzard own any mod you make for their games. It becomes their intellectual property the moment you upload it to their servers, and likely they could argue as soon as you start development using their engine code.

This is done to stop any mod makers trying to sell their mods, and thus profit off Blizzards engine.

Seriously do you guys not realise game engines cost duck loads to buy? Blizzard were basically giving a couple ks worth of software to every mod maker. Of course they own the rights to everything you make from it. If you want to own the commercial rights to an engine, you need to pay for it.

To put it into perspective, unreal engine 3 costs $100 and 25% of the profits. DoTA devs paid nothing, because they paid with the rights to the game.
 
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