copyright

Japan’s most-wanted manga pirate arrested in the Philippines, facing deportation

Government official calls 28-year-old “a risk to public safety and security.”

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Nintendo takes “real-life Mario Kart” company to court for the second time and wins yet again

No amount of blue shells or stars can save the offending company from the judge’s gavel.

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Chiitan’s management speaks out about copyright issues and future with Susaki City

Chiitan’s management claim a city rep in charge of happiness told them “permission wasn’t needed.”

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It’s WAR! Susaki City demands Chiitan suspend all activities over copyright violation

This is an otter travesty.

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Chinese government uses character bearing uncanny resemblance to Mario in anti-corruption video

Famous plumber finds himself sucked into a world of politics.

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Awesome phone booth aquarium removed from Japanese city due to copyright infringement

After years of attracting visitors from all over Japan, this quirky display has finally moved on.

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Manga Town would like to remind everyone that they are not Manga Town, a.k.a. Manga Village

This looks like a job for the manga zoning board.

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Evil barbershop punished by heroic copyright agency for playing stereo

Let that be a lesson to anyone who dares play a CD in a place where it might be overheard by someone else.

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“Winny Incident” movie wins huge crowdfunding support

After its crowdfunding target is smashed, writing begins on the story of how Japan stifled its own IT development in the name of combating file-sharing.

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Twitter user devises simple way to destroy Japan’s music copyright collective

The answer, my friends, was just blowin’ in the winds of Twitter.

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The times they are a-litigious: Kyoto University gets billed for using Bob Dylan lyrics in speech

Japan’s copyright enforcers ask: how many words must a man write down, before he can be shaken down?

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Korean chicken restaurant sued by Louis Vuitton for copyright infringement

A South Korean chicken restaurant owner got a rude awakening when he was slapped with a $12,800 fine for ripping off the famous French designer label’s name and monogram design.

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Answerman — Who polices anime copyrights?

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Japanese police arrest 44 in three days for alleged file-sharing

Arrests conducted with prefectural police in 29 prefectures.

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Japanese lawyer: Making cosplay for others is copyright infringement

In about a week, Halloween, cosplayers‘ favorite holiday, will be upon us. Millions of people — increasingly including Japanese — will take to the streets in costume, and much of it will be cosplay. But some of this activity may actually be against Japanese law.

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7-Eleven oden ad refused by Tokyo Olympic Committee due to similarity to their logo

The dispute over the emblem for the 2020 Olympic games and its alleged plagiarism continues to simmer in Japan people are still suggesting alternatives to what are currently the most beleaguered geometric shapes in the world.

And then there are those who are embracing the still official emblem for what it is. Convenience store chain 7-Eleven is one such proponent. One franchise in Musashikoganei created a homage out of the delicious Japanese stewed food known as oden for a promotional posted to be hung in their store.

However, the Tokyo Olympic Committee politely refused use of the poster saying that the placement of foodstuffs infringed on the likeness of their emblem which is currently being accused of infringing on another logo.

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Thousands sign petition against TPP’s supposed copyright conditions

A few months ago, it was reported that the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement may contain changes to copyright laws that many are calling “excessive.” In response to this, a growing number of lawyers, journalists, writers, and others involved in Japanese culture have signed a petition to convince the Japanese government to refuse such conditions.

If the agreement is reached, the minimum limit of copyrights could be extended by 20 years, and even non-copyright holders such as police and prosecutors may be given the ability to go after people for “infringements”. Those opposed feel that these changes could seriously damage the artistic freedom of Japan.

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And now, a heartwarming corporate anecdote featuring Nintendo and Bandai

Nintendo and Bandai are two of Japan’s biggest companies with the former really needing no introduction. Although Bandai (now under the auspices of Bandai Namco) is not quite the household name that Nintendo is, its name should be instantly recognizable to even modest video game and toy fans.

As such, you might expect these two organizations to be cold, merciless machines of corporate greed pursuing nothing but the fuel of money to continue their heartless existences…and you might be right. However, here is a small anecdote that says different in a classy chance exchange between these two titans of toys.

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Astro Simpson, Obama the Hedgehog, and more weird/depressing knockoff toys from around the world

Have you heard of the “moron in a hurry test“? It’s a legal test for trademark infringement. Basically, if you can successfully argue that “only a moron in a hurry” could confuse your product with another, you can get away with slightly ripping off somebody else’s design. But you’d have to be a real dingbat to confuse this gallery of 30 knockoff toys for the real things!

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When a single dot doesn’t do the trick: Legal trouble ensues for izakaya over name

We live in a world of innovation and inspiration. Every day, we see new products riffing on older ones, and apps that are purporting to be the next Instagram for Snapchat inspired by Vine.

But when does something cease to innovate and become a simple knock-off? Would you consider “Word・Press” a different web service from “WordPress”? How about if someone opened up a hamburger joint called “McDonalds” instead of “McDonald’s”? Well one izakaya in Hiroshima, Japan tested out this first example for us, and found that simply slipping a dot into its name didn’t allow it to get around copyright and trademark laws.

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