Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Taser International, Inc. v Linden Research Inc.

On April 17, 2009 Taser International Inc. filed a lawsuit against Linden Research Inc. and others containing various trademark infringements. Taser claims unauthorized sell of virtual versions of its electric stun guns. The company seeks damages in excess of $75,000. The list of defendants is strictly related to Linden Lab and covers not only entities like Virtuatrade, LLC (the former owner of XStreet SL) but also individuals (generally Linden Lab's management).

The complaint alleges that Linden Lab and others are engaging in conduct which is damaging to Taser’s reputation and hurting its sales. Taser also claims that its brand will be damaged via association with virtual sex and virtual drug use occuring within Second Life. One of the businesses that makes Taser replicas (The Newman Group) does a trade in an urban role-play called The Crack Den.

The suit is entitled Taser International Inc. v. Linden Research Inc., 2:09-cv-00811, and is venued in the U.S. District Court, District of Arizona (Phoenix). The case will be heard by the federal judge Roslyn O. Silver.

It is the first time a major company has sued Linden Lab for infringement which occurred in Second Life.

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