Pokemon Black and White has finally been release and Pokemon fansites are exploding with news about the games. Fansites such as Serebii, Pokebeach and many others are updating by the hour with new images, news and content regarding the new games with people hitting the sites for every little piece of news. Though it seems like some people may not want this.
In a recent development, word has come in that Nintendo has been issuing out Copyright Infringement Notices to several popular Pokemon fansites such as Pokebeach and Serebii. The letter is asking these sites to remove all screenshots, video and other protected content regarding Pokemon Black and White. Most of these sites have removed their screenshots of the games with Serebii removing all of their images regarding the games going as far back as last month including images of the recently revealed gym leaders and Elite Four members.
Below is the letter that Pokebeach received:
“URGENT & TIME SENSITIVE: IMMEDIATE ATTENTION REQUIRED September 18, 2010 Registrant PokeBeach.com RE: Infringement of Nintendo of America Inc.‚Äôs Intellectual Property Rights
Dear Sir or Madam:
We are legal counsel to Nintendo of America Inc. (referred to here, with its parent and affiliated companies, as ‚ÄúNintendo‚ÄĚ). As you are no doubt well aware, Nintendo is one of the world‚Äôs leading developers and distributors of video game products. The Pok√©mon franchise is one of Nintendo‚Äôs most popular game series, and the upcoming release of the Pok√©mon Black and Pok√©mon White video games has garnered significant media attention. The intellectual property associated with the games, including the copyright in the underlying software code, visual depictions of the games, and characters found within the games, is the subject of copyright protection in the United States and abroad.
We recently learned that you have posted screenshots and other protected content from the Pok√©mon Black and Pok√©mon White games to your website at http://pokebeach.com. While Nintendo appreciates your interest in and support of the Pok√©mon game series, your publication of this content infringes Nintendo‚Äôs copyrights in violation of federal law. Your activity also and has the potential to cause substantial damage to Nintendo, and leaves Nintendo with no choice but to take steps to protect its intellectual property rights.
We have accordingly submitted a copyright infringement notice to your domain registrar under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, and anticipate that your website will be taken down shortly. We encourage you to immediately remove from your website all graphics, screenshots, and other protected content taken from the Pok√©mon Black and Pok√©mon White games. Going forward, you must also refrain from posting any screenshots, videos, or other content that infringes Nintendo‚Äôs rights in the Pok√©mon series or any other game.
Your full and immediate compliance with the foregoing should render further action on Nintendo‚Äôs part unnecessary. It is essential that we receive your written response confirming that you have taken these necessary actions by Sunday, September 19, 12:00 p.m. PDT, however, or Nintendo will have no choice but to consider its alternative legal remedies.
Please contact me if you would like to discuss this matter in further detail. Nothing stated herein shall constitute a waiver of any rights or remedies of Nintendo of America Inc., its parent or affiliated companies, all of which are expressly reserved.“
It isn’t sure if these letters are actually from Nintendo but these sites are taking this seriously. Though this isn’t keeping fans of these sites from questioning the validly of the letter. If anything this could be a clever hoax hoping to scared popular Pokemon sites or something similar. Though it is curious to see that Nintendo is taking action against these sites now when they could have done so in the past for other game releases such as Pokemon Diamond and Pearl and recently with Pokemon HeartGold and SoulSilver.
Several other sites could possibility be asked remove content regarding the new Pokemon games including several YouTube channels. At this moment and knowledge, PE2K hasn’t receive any request to remove content from our site regarding Pokemon Black and White. We will try to keep you posted if any more news does come in regarding this issue.
Mikey can also be found at ‘One Piece at a Time‘ blog.