MEET IN THE MIDDLE: Netflix Settles ‘Black Mirror’ Trademark Lawsuit

A current entertainment industry lawsuit has been settled.

On Monday, Netflix and Chooseco LLC, a publisher who owns the trademark to the childrens’ book “Choose Your Own Adventure” reached a settlement. Neither side has commented on the terms.

Back in 2018, Netflix created an interactive experience, Black Mirror: Bandersnatch. In Bandersnatch, a video game designer prepares to pitch something he wishes to create. This character explains to his father that the game is based on the work of a fictional book. The father says the author must be good because his son is always flicking backwards and forwards.” The son responds, “No, it’s a ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ book.”  Later, when Bandersnatch was released, audiences noted the similarity to the book, ‘Choose Your Own Adventure.”

Earlier this year, a judge denied Netflix’s motion to dismiss the case.  Netflix had put up a First Amendment defense, in which the judge found factual issues that needed to be explored in discovery.  Netflix then got aggressive with a bid to cancel the “Choose Your Own Adventure” trademark.

Chooseco continues to maintain its mark.  Chooseco has also applied to have the mark officially classified in downloadable animated video recordings featuring multiple choice endings.

Did you take part in Bandersnatch?  To make sure your trademark is protected like Chooseco’s, reach out to Carter Law Group.

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