Nintendo on inappropriate use of intellectual property rights and games: ‘Action must be taken’

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During the Nintendo era84th Annual General Meeting of ShareholdersCompany president Shuntaro Furukawa was asked how Nintendo would handle “issues on social media where intellectual property rights and Nintendo games are used inappropriately” when “the behavior poses a risk of harming the value” of its brand.

While Furukawa did not want to comment on any “individual cases,” he did mention how “appropriate action must be taken against any behavior that undermines” the Japanese company’s “environmental” policy.Bringing smiles through entertainmentThe company will also “continue to make every effort to ensure that its consumers do not feel uncomfortable” when dealing with Nintendo’s intellectual property “not only” in its games but also “anywhere else” they interact with it.

Shuntaro Furukawa: “Our company aims to realize our management policy of “bringing a smile through entertainment” by suggesting unique games that anyone can enjoy intuitively. I will refrain from commenting on individual cases, but we believe that appropriate action should be taken against any behavior that undermines this policy.

“Our goal is to create an environment where everyone can enjoy playing games. We will continue to do everything we can to ensure that our consumers do not feel uncomfortable, not only in our games but anywhere they interact with our intellectual property.”

Although no specific cases are mentioned, as is the case Eurogamer NotesIn 2018, there was a time when a fan creation known as Bowsette (a combination of Peach and Bowser) went viral on social media and elsewhere online. Nintendo’s official response at the time was “no comment” and the fan-made character craze eventually died down.

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Beyond social media, Nintendo has targeted fan projects it deems inappropriate and potentially damaging to its brand. In September 2020, it set its sights on a fan-made game starring Princess Peach. More recently, it filed a lawsuit against a remix project by Rhythm Heaven, and just this week it continued its campaign against Switch piracy with two new lawsuits.

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