Don't Tase Me, Bro... Second Life Zapped by TASER Lawsuit

April 21, 2009 -

TASER International, which manufactures the controversial electric stun guns that bear its name, has given a jolt to Linden Lab and a number of its corporate executives with a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Arizona.

TASER, which faces numerous lawsuits of its own filed by individuals who have been tased (or, in some cases, their survivors) is concerned that virtual TASER replica items are being sold in Second Life as gear for SL avatars (see pic at left).

TASER also alleges that its brand will be damaged via association with virtual sex and virtual drug use occuring within Second Life. From the 102-page complaint:

All of the defendants that sell virtual property like Plaintiff's real ones, under the mark TASER for use in Second Life programs and grids, also sell adult-only explicit images and scenes... thus attaching such content to the TASER mark... and also sell unlawful drug materials... thus attaching such content to the TASER mark...

TASER 's claims are primarily based on trademark considerations. The company seeks damages in excess of $75,000.

Via: Massively

UPDATE: New World Notes has more...

UPDATE 2: GamesLaw offers a legal analysis of the TASER suit.

UPDATE 3: New World Notes reports that Linden Lab, owner of SL, contacted an in-world vendor of virtual items and requested that "Taser" be replaced with "stun gun."


Comments

Re: Don't Tase Me, Bro... Second Life Zapped by TASER ...

does postal 2 call them tasers or stun guns?

taser doesn't own the right to stun guns but they are trying to protect their brand here

Re: Don't Tase Me, Bro... Second Life Zapped by TASER ...

Been a while since I played it last, but I think they were just called Stun Guns.

--------------------------------------------------

I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

-------------------------------------------------- I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

Re: Don't Tase Me, Bro... Second Life Zapped by TASER Lawsuit

True, but what I was getting at is this is the first I heard about them not wanting their product assciated with a certain something, yet not attacking forms of media that might do it worse. Almost no one knows about SL or cares when something happens there, yet other things get a free ride.

Re: Don't Tase Me, Bro... Second Life Zapped by TASER Lawsuit

People outside of the gaming 'loop' always seem to think SL is a far, far bigger deal than it is. Just look at politicians who keep trying to use it to 'connect with the youth of today'.

--------------------------------------------------

I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

-------------------------------------------------- I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

Re: Don't Tase Me, Bro... Second Life Zapped by TASER ...

It's rather funny really... I never even knew about SL until I started coming to this site.

Re: Don't Tase Me, Bro... Second Life Zapped by TASER Lawsuit

Did they or did they not give permission for their brand to be in the game? Surely it's that simple?

--------------------------------------------------

I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

-------------------------------------------------- I LIKE the fence. I get 2 groups to laugh at then.

Re: Don't Tase Me, Bro... Second Life Zapped by TASER ...

Assuming they are suing the right people, that is exactly what it will come down to.

But since they are suing Linden Labs instead, it will get rather murkey since LL is not the content producer nor the content owner.  This really gets into the whole topic of who is legally responsible for user created content, esp when one expclititly does NOT claim ownership of what is producted.

Re: Don't Tase Me, Bro... Second Life Zapped by TASER ...

It depends; Linden Labs is selling the currency used to puchase the virtual TASERS; it could be argued that they profit off the sales of any virtual content they allow on their servers and are therefore responsible for that content.

Re: Don't Tase Me, Bro... Second Life Zapped by TASER ...

I can honestly say that I agree with Taser's lawsuit on this one. If I were trying to run a reputible company, I'd hate to have my image associated with pornography and drug use, even to such a small audience. Generally speaking, I usually am biased towards the little person, with regards to corporations suing individuals, but in this case, I can see Taser's point.

Re: Don't Tase Me, Bro... Second Life Zapped by TASER ...

We at Taser, would hate to see our reputation get ruined by people doing dastardly deeds, so were also looking to pull out of the "Earth" market. Due to people being people.

 
Forgot your password?
Username :
Password :

Shout box

You're not permitted to post shouts.
MattsworknameWilson: how? Im still waiting for my upgrade notice07/29/2015 - 3:44am
Matthew WilsonI updated to a clean instill of windows 10.07/29/2015 - 2:36am
Mattsworknameargue that it's wrong, but then please admit it's wrong on ALL Fronts07/29/2015 - 2:06am
MattsworknameTechnoGeek: It's actually NOT, but it is a method used all across the specturm. See Rush limbaugh, MSNBC, Shawn hannity, etc etc, how many compagns have been brought up to try and shut them down by going after there advertisers. It's fine if you wanna07/29/2015 - 2:05am
Mattsworknamediscussed, while not what I liked and not the methods I wanted to see used, were , in a sense, the effort of thsoe game consuming masses to hold what they felt was supposed to be there press accountable for what many of them felt was Betrayal07/29/2015 - 2:03am
MattsworknameAs we say, the gamers are dead article set of a firestorm among the game consuming populace, who, ideally, were the intended audiance for sites like Kotaku, Polygon, Et all. As such, the turn about on them and the attacking of them, via the metods07/29/2015 - 2:03am
MattsworknameAndrew: Thats kind fo the issue at hand, Accountable is a matter of context. For a media group, it means accountable to its reader. to a goverment, to it's voters and tax payer, to a company, to it's share holders.07/29/2015 - 2:02am
Andrew EisenAnd again, you keep saying "accountable." What exactly does that mean? How is Gamasutra not accounting for the editorial it published?07/28/2015 - 11:47pm
Andrew EisenMatt - I disagree with your 9:12 and 9:16 comment. There are myriad ways to address content you don't like. And they're far easier to execute in the online space.07/28/2015 - 11:47pm
Andrew EisenMatt - Banning in the legal sense? Not that I'm aware but there have certainly been groups of gamers who have worked towards getting content they don't like removed.07/28/2015 - 11:45pm
DanJAlexander's editorial was and continues to be grossly misrepresented by her opponents. And if you don't like a site, you stop reading it - same as not watching a tv show. They get your first click, but not your second.07/28/2015 - 11:40pm
TechnogeekYes, because actively trying to convince advertisers to influence the editorial content of media is a perfectly acceptable thing to do, especially for a movement that's ostensibly about journalistic ethics.07/28/2015 - 11:02pm
Mattsworknameanother07/28/2015 - 9:16pm
Mattsworknameyou HAVE TO click on it. So they get the click revenue weather you like what it says or not. as such, the targeting of advertisers most likely seemed like a good course of action to those who wanted to hold those media groups accountable for one reason07/28/2015 - 9:16pm
MattsworknameBut, when you look at online media, it's completely different, with far more options, but far few ways to address issues that the consumers may have. In tv, you don't like what they show, you don't watch. But in order to see if you like something online07/28/2015 - 9:12pm
MattsworknameIn tv, and radio, ratings are how it works. your ratings determine how well you do and how much money you an charge.07/28/2015 - 9:02pm
Mattsworknameexpect to do so without someone wanting to hold you to task for it07/28/2015 - 9:00pm
MattsworknameMecha: I don't think anyone was asking for Editoral changes, what they wanted was to show those media groups that if they were gonna bash there own audiance, the audiance was not gonna take it sitting down. you can write what you want, but you can't07/28/2015 - 8:56pm
MattsworknameAndrew, Im asking as a practical question, Have gamers, as a group, ever asked for a game, or other item, to be banned. Im trying to see if theres any cases anyone else remembers cause I cant find or remember any.07/28/2015 - 8:55pm
Andrew EisenAs mentioned, Gamasutra isn't a gaming site, it's a game industry site. I don't feel it's changed its focus at all. Also, I don't get the sense that the majority of the people who took issue with that one opinion piece were regular readers anyway.07/28/2015 - 8:43pm
 

Be Heard - Contact Your Politician