Non-Fungible Tokens™

Australian Company Banned by Federal Court from Launching Unauthorised Pokémon-themed NFTs

Parramatta-based developer Kotiota also made false representations about its relationship with The Pokémon Company International, court hears

An Australian company has been banned by a federal court from releasing unsanctioned NFTs (non-fungible tokens) that feature the popular Pokémon brand. The court ruled that the company had violated copyright and trademark laws by creating and selling the NFTs without obtaining the proper licenses from the Pokémon Company, the owner of the Pokémon brand.

The court’s decision came after the Pokémon Company filed a lawsuit against the Australian company, claiming that it had been selling NFTs featuring Pokémon characters and imagery without obtaining the necessary permissions. The company argued that it had the exclusive rights to create and sell Pokémon-branded products, and that the Australian company’s actions had caused confusion among consumers and damaged the Pokémon brand’s reputation.

The court agreed with the Pokémon Company’s arguments, stating that the Australian company had “flagrantly and deliberately” violated the company’s rights. The court also ordered the Australian company to pay the Pokémon Company damages, and to destroy any remaining NFTs that featured Pokémon characters or imagery.

This case highlights the importance of obtaining proper licenses and permissions when creating and selling NFTs, especially when they feature popular and well-known brands. It also serves as a warning to companies who try to profit off of other’s intellectual property without permission.

The incident also showcases the legal challenges that arise with the new and evolving technology of NFTs and how the law is trying to catch up and provide clear guidelines for the use of NFTs and IP rights.

In conclusion, the court’s decision serves as a reminder that creators and sellers of NFTs must be mindful of copyright and trademark laws, and to obtain the necessary licenses and permissions before releasing NFTs featuring popular and well-known brands. It also serves as a warning to companies trying to profit off of other’s intellectual property without permission.

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