Man utd suing Football Manager

uneasydaz

Well-Known Member
Manchester United are suing the makers of the Football Manager series for allegedly infringing their trademark by using the club's name "extensively throughout the game".

The Premier League side have taken legal action against Sega Publishing and Sports Interactive (SI) - the publisher and developer of the popular football management simulation.


The club also argue Sega and SI have infringed their trademark over their logo by not using the official Manchester United crest in the game, instead "replacing the club crest with a simplified red and white striped logo"

Manchester United claim this "deprives the registered proprietor of its right to have the club crest licensed".

Sega and SI say the use of the club's name is "a legitimate reference to the Manchester United football team in a football context" and has been used in Football Manager and its predecessor, Championship Manager, since 1992 "without complaint by the claimant"

The companies have accused the club of trying to "prevent legitimate competition in the video games field by preventing parties not licensed by the claimant from using the name of the Manchester United football team within such games".

return to action. Pictures: Manchester United
At a preliminary remote hearing on Friday, Manchester United's barrister Simon Malynicz QC said "the name 'Manchester United' is one of the world's most valuable and recognised brands".

He said the money clubs make from licensing their names and logos is "very significant" and "the products and services that are licensed by the claimant benefit from an association with the club's winning culture and its brand values".

Mr Malynicz argued, in relation to the alleged infringement of the trademark on Man Utd's logo, that "consumers expect to see the club crest next to the name Manchester United ... and this failure to do so amounts to wrongful use".

He accepted this argument is "somewhat novel, and certainly in the context of video games, but it is certainly arguable".

The barrister asked Mr Justice Morgan to allow the club to amend their claim against Sega and SI to include allegations involving "the practice of supplying 'patches' or 'mods', essentially downloadable files containing replica trademarks, which consumers then incorporate into the game".

Mr Malynicz argued Sega and SI "encouraged" the use of patches supplied by third parties "by promoting the patch providers in various ways and, of course, they directly benefited from it by avoiding the need to take any licence and enjoying increased sales of their game".

Roger Wyand QC, representing the defendants, opposed the club's application to amend their claim.

In their written defence to Man Utd's claim, Sega and SI said: "The claimant has acquiesced in the use by the defendants of the name of the Manchester United football team in the Football Manager game and cannot now complain of such use."

Mr Wyand argued the "simplified" club badge used in the game is "one of 14 generic logo templates that is randomly chosen by the Football Manager game engine each time a new game is started" and "clearly indicates that the use of the (logo of) Manchester United is not licensed by the claimant".

Sega and SI said preventing them using Manchester United's name "would amount to an unreasonable restraint on the right to freedom of expression to restrain the use of the words 'Manchester United' to refer to a team in a computer game".

Mr Wyand pointed out that "copies of the game have also been sent by SI to a number of officials and players at the (club) for a number of years and there have been a number of positive press comments and tweets about the game by them".

He added: "Further, the claimant's staff working in the data analytics and scouting teams have contacted SI on various occasions asking for access to the Football Manager database for scouting and research purposes."
 

vinnie

Well-Known Member
PES style ‘Man Red’ incoming?

The files to update the names of everything plus proper logos etc. are available about 5 minutes after FM comes out anyway if you know where to look, will make zero difference.
Yup, SI will sort it to make manure happy and will be shake off any blame because they can’t control other people modding and sharing. Hard luck United. Not like is going mean life or death to them.
 

Hehaw

Well-Known Member
This better no increase the cost of FM next year, in all honesty, I hope this isn't the going to be a common thing for clubs to make claims against FM.
 

Spitfire

Active Member
Manchester United are suing the makers of the Football Manager series for allegedly infringing their trademark by using the club's name "extensively throughout the game".

The Premier League side have taken legal action against Sega Publishing and Sports Interactive (SI) - the publisher and developer of the popular football management simulation.


The club also argue Sega and SI have infringed their trademark over their logo by not using the official Manchester United crest in the game, instead "replacing the club crest with a simplified red and white striped logo"

Manchester United claim this "deprives the registered proprietor of its right to have the club crest licensed".

Sega and SI say the use of the club's name is "a legitimate reference to the Manchester United football team in a football context" and has been used in Football Manager and its predecessor, Championship Manager, since 1992 "without complaint by the claimant"

The companies have accused the club of trying to "prevent legitimate competition in the video games field by preventing parties not licensed by the claimant from using the name of the Manchester United football team within such games".

return to action. Pictures: Manchester United
At a preliminary remote hearing on Friday, Manchester United's barrister Simon Malynicz QC said "the name 'Manchester United' is one of the world's most valuable and recognised brands".

He said the money clubs make from licensing their names and logos is "very significant" and "the products and services that are licensed by the claimant benefit from an association with the club's winning culture and its brand values".

Mr Malynicz argued, in relation to the alleged infringement of the trademark on Man Utd's logo, that "consumers expect to see the club crest next to the name Manchester United ... and this failure to do so amounts to wrongful use".

He accepted this argument is "somewhat novel, and certainly in the context of video games, but it is certainly arguable".

The barrister asked Mr Justice Morgan to allow the club to amend their claim against Sega and SI to include allegations involving "the practice of supplying 'patches' or 'mods', essentially downloadable files containing replica trademarks, which consumers then incorporate into the game".

Mr Malynicz argued Sega and SI "encouraged" the use of patches supplied by third parties "by promoting the patch providers in various ways and, of course, they directly benefited from it by avoiding the need to take any licence and enjoying increased sales of their game".

Roger Wyand QC, representing the defendants, opposed the club's application to amend their claim.

In their written defence to Man Utd's claim, Sega and SI said: "The claimant has acquiesced in the use by the defendants of the name of the Manchester United football team in the Football Manager game and cannot now complain of such use."

Mr Wyand argued the "simplified" club badge used in the game is "one of 14 generic logo templates that is randomly chosen by the Football Manager game engine each time a new game is started" and "clearly indicates that the use of the (logo of) Manchester United is not licensed by the claimant".

Sega and SI said preventing them using Manchester United's name "would amount to an unreasonable restraint on the right to freedom of expression to restrain the use of the words 'Manchester United' to refer to a team in a computer game".

Mr Wyand pointed out that "copies of the game have also been sent by SI to a number of officials and players at the (club) for a number of years and there have been a number of positive press comments and tweets about the game by them".

He added: "Further, the claimant's staff working in the data analytics and scouting teams have contacted SI on various occasions asking for access to the Football Manager database for scouting and research purposes."
Pretty pathetic from Man UTD.
 

RFC_Champions

Well-Known Member
This prob all started from a wee guy on Man Utd’s version of our FF forum moaning about it and starting a petition. Whereas outside their bubble - nobody really gives a fück.

Unfortunately a stark wake up call for us given our very recent fights/issues. Sadly nobody outside our own really give a fück either!
 

Amato

Well-Known Member
They only noticing now, not like their name has been all championship/football manager games since the 90's!
 

rupertdabear

Active Member
i know nothing about the game or no interest either but that is rather sad from united.
they are getting free promotion of their brand .pathetic tbh
 

oranje-viola

Well-Known Member
United’s net debt up £127m to £429m.
Holding cash of £90m with access to another £150m.

Certainly not immune to the current crisis....

Is it just mere co-incidence they lash out like this on the day they announced those figures highlighting those losses?

Skint so they are trying any which way but can to claw in some money?

Despite being the biggest behemoth of all in the EPL in terms of their global presence, they must be feeling the pinch of not having nearly 80,000 turn up every second week and the massive hospitality and commercial operations they have each matchday as well.
 

SuffolkGer

Well-Known Member
So a "huge brand" won't be in the biggest manager game about, instead they'll be down as Man Red and everyone playing will patch it in less than 5 minutes. Bit of an own goal by them, unless they can bleed some money from Sega. Id have thought Sega could update the current game with a patch that takes all reference out to avoid that though.
 
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