We all know that Bethesda parent company Zenimax and Minecraft maker Mojang are headed to court to settle a trademark dispute over the term "Scrolls," but -- according to Markus 'Notch' Persson -- the whole ordeal could have been avoided. As you already know, Minecraft maker Mojang received a letter from Bethesda's lawyers asking them to "cease and desist" using the term "Scrolls" because it infringed on its "Elder Scrolls" trademark and would cause brand confusion.
Sometime after that happened, Persson claims that he offered to change the name of the game. He claims this conversation between his company and lawyers for Bethesda happened before his very public proclamation that Mojang would "fight this for as long as it takes" because "It's a bogus claim."
Yesterday he wrote the following short statement on his blog:
"I feel the need to clarify a couple of things:
We realized we should apply for the trademark 'Minecraft' to protect our brand. When doing so, we also sent in an application for 'Scrolls.' When Bethesda contacted us, we offered both to change the name to "Scrolls: [some subtitle]" and to give up the trademark.
They refused on both counts.
Whatever reason they have for suing us, it’s not a fear of us having a trademark on the word "Scrolls" as we’ve offered to give that up."
If true, then why would Bethesda continue to court? Perhaps to teach the small developer a lesson? We don't know, but we'll continue to follow this story as it develops.