Bethesda: “Nobody here enjoys” pursuing Scrolls trademark dispute

Friday, 7th October 2011 00:24 GMT By Brenna Hillier

Bethesda and Zenimax have had a lot of bad press over its Scrolls trademark dispute with Mojang, but the publisher is in a difficult position and not exactly delighted by it, either.

“This is a business matter based on how trademark law works and it will continue to be dealt with by lawyers who understand it, not by me or our developers,” Bethesda vice president Pete Hines told Kotaku when asked about the case.

But even though Hines wouldn’t comment on the particulars of the case, he did let slip that things aren’t as clear cut as we might have believed.

“Mojang’s public comments have not given a complete picture as it relates to their filings, our trademarks, or events that have taken place,” he said.

Legal experts told Kotaku that trademark law will undermine Bethesda’s The Elder Scrolls trademark if it doesn’t challenge Mojang; the US Patent and Trademark Office’s own assessment found the marks too similar to co-exist legally:

“The applicant’s mark so resembles [The Elder Scrolls trademark] as to be likely to cause confusion, to cause mistake, or to deceive. Regarding the The Elder Scrolls marks, the applicant has merely deleted the term ELDER from the registered mark. The mere deletion of wording from a registered mark may not be sufficient to overcome a likelihood of confusion.”

Despite these suggestions that Zenimax is only doing what is legally required of it if it wants to hold onto its rights, Bethesda isn’t happy about the situation.

“Nobody here enjoys being forced into this. Hopefully it will all be resolved soon,” Hines commented.

Zenimax has filed against Mojang in a Swedish court over the title of its upcoming game, Scrolls.



  1. Samuel

    Then why, when Notch offered to change the name and abandon the trademark, did they refuse?

    #1 3 years ago
  2. JimFear-666

    bethesda is one of the worst developpement studio. they send to retail some god awefull unplayable buggy games. I really hope more than ever they lose so i will be able to laugh at them.

    #2 3 years ago
  3. klewd

    is vg247 the new gametrailers now? noticed a lot of comments like these lately.

    #3 3 years ago
  4. Cygnar

    Nothing new here. There have been some truly bitter commentators here at VG247 for a long time.

    #4 3 years ago
  5. viralshag

    There was quite a few people (I mean commenters) saying that this was the reason why they need to take him to court over it. I don’t why they didn’t come out earlier and just say:

    “hey guys, we don’t want to do this but due to certain laws we have to.”

    At least people would have been more ion the know rather than just letting Notch fire people up over it. And surely there must be a way for The Elder Scrolls and Scrolls to exist.

    #5 3 years ago
  6. expose the core

    If you are shown not to have protected your trademarks you may lose them.

    #6 3 years ago
  7. Fin


    That was the same excuse the guy with the Edge trademark, Langdell (I think?), used.

    #7 3 years ago
  8. mojo

    Well, as the question, so the answer.

    #8 3 years ago
  9. Hybridpsycho

    The reason why they’re doing this lawsuit is that Notch wanna trademark “Scrolls” if he would get this through he’d be able to sue Bethesda and put em in alot of trouble.

    #9 3 years ago

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