Regarding the New England Anime Society, Inc. Lawsuit

This forum contains discussion about all news and announcements related to Anime Boston.
Post Reply
User avatar
Faceman
AB Executive
Posts: 3156
Joined: Fri Sep 08, 2006 2:26 am
Location: Boston, MA

Regarding the New England Anime Society, Inc. Lawsuit

Post by Faceman » Thu Nov 30, 2017 4:38 pm

As you may have heard, New England Anime Society, Inc., Anime Boston's parent corporation, is engaging in a lawsuit against Fantastic Gatherings, Inc. and Interactive Meet and Greet Entertainment LLC., the organizers of the "Boston Anime Fest" convention.

NEAS is always enthusiastic about other organizations that support and promote the celebration of Japanese pop-culture. Convention organizers are part of a tight-knit group and when one does well we all benefit. We hope that Fantastic Gatherings and IMAGE have a very successful event, but we think they should do so using their own trademark and not one that is confusingly similar to our mark and brand.

NEAS has put a lot of hard work and energy into building its own goodwill as the sole user of its distinctive brand and mark over the past 16 years. The Anime Boston mark has become synonymous with our events and it has been registered with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. We do not want consumers and anime enthusiasts to be mistaken by another group's use of a confusingly similar mark. That is what this case is about.

All we have asked is for Fantastic Gatherings and IMAGE to change their event's name to something not so similar to our own mark. After denying our request twice, they have left us with no choice but to go to court to defend our mark and brand.
Chris O'Connell
Director of Public Relations 2017, 2018
Assistant Director of Public Relations 2015-2016
Webmaster 2010-2016
President of New England Anime Society, Inc.

Have a question? Private Message or Email me!

User avatar
Fetch
Show-off
Posts: 1262
Joined: Sun Jul 23, 2006 9:59 am
Location: Walpole

Re: Regarding the New England Anime Society, Inc. Lawsuit

Post by Fetch » Thu Dec 07, 2017 8:11 pm

Here is a detail you seem to have missed:
'AnimeFest' is just a piece of Boston Southcoast Comic Con, not a separate con.

I'm pretty sure I know who is at fault for giving them the idea to market different parts of one convention with different names, for she used the same idea when she was part of the staff for New England Fan Experience. All it did was cause confusion for the attendees, as many thought they needed to buy separate passes to see all the stuff there. She apparently did not learn her lesson.

User avatar
Faceman
AB Executive
Posts: 3156
Joined: Fri Sep 08, 2006 2:26 am
Location: Boston, MA

Re: Regarding the New England Anime Society, Inc. Lawsuit

Post by Faceman » Fri Dec 08, 2017 7:57 pm

Update:

As previously announced, New England Anime Society, Inc. filed a lawsuit in the United States federal court against Interactive Meet and Greet Entertainment, LLC and Fantastic Gatherings, Inc. The basis of this lawsuit is that IMAGE and FG had changed the name of their event to "Boston Anime Fest," which NEAS believed was confusingly close to and infringed on NEAS's own registered trademark, "Anime Boston."

On Thursday, December 7th, United States District Judge Sorokin granted NEAS's motion for a preliminary injunction. The injunction requires IMAGE and FG to change their use of “Boston AnimeFest” in all of their print, digital and online promotional materials so that “Boston” does not appear in such close proximity to “AnimeFest” or “Anime” so as to be confusingly similar to NEAS's mark. IMAGE and FG have until the start of their event on Saturday, December 9, 2017 to comply with this court-ordered injunction.

While we appreciate that some are critical of NEAS’s decision to bring this matter to court, NEAS is committed to defending its "Anime Boston" trademark. The law requires that we police and defend against infringement, because failing to do so could mean we lose ownership of it. That might allow others to use the "Anime Boston" name without our consent, and would result in people being confused.

It was not NEAS's wish to bring this matter to court. Through counsel, we reached out to IMAGE and FG twice asking that they change their mark to something not so similar to ours. We warned IMAGE and FG that, in the absence of an agreement to change their mark, we might have no choice but to file a claim in court. Both times they rejected our requests.

NEAS worked in good faith, at Judge Sorokin’s request, to come to a mutual agreement with IMAGE and FG. Although FG’s representative agreed to terms we proposed, IMAGE's owner ultimately did not. When an agreement was not possible, Judge Sorokin granted our injunction request Thursday afternoon. While the court records are publicly available through the PACER system, for easier access we have provided a zip file of the Signed Injunction order, the Emergency Motion for Injunction, and Exhibits 1-5 here: http://bit.ly/2BYCBay.

Legal requirements aside, there is a practical need to maintain our brand's distinctiveness. NEAS and its volunteer staff have dedicated over 16 years to building Anime Boston and making it into a first class event. The public, our partners, our community, and all of those involved in the industry associate “Anime Boston” with NEAS, our event, and our services. We value that goodwill and the positive working relationships that come with it. We do not want the reputation and good name we have established to be confused with another company. We also do not want to be confused with another company, its services, or its reputation, good or bad. This is an industry grounded in creative works we all love and celebrate. NEAS has immense respect for the rights of others in their creative works and intellectual property. We expect the same respect for ours.

At this point we look forward to IMAGE and FG's full compliance with the conditions set forth in the court-ordered injunction.
Chris O'Connell
Director of Public Relations 2017, 2018
Assistant Director of Public Relations 2015-2016
Webmaster 2010-2016
President of New England Anime Society, Inc.

Have a question? Private Message or Email me!

User avatar
Kalyoth
Expert Poster
Posts: 91
Joined: Sun Mar 23, 2008 5:21 pm

Re: Regarding the New England Anime Society, Inc. Lawsuit

Post by Kalyoth » Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:22 pm

If you could, the links to the ruling etc. error out when attempting to open them via the link. Could you look into this as I am curious on the ruling etc.
Thanks.

FYI: Tried to locate this via PACER - they charge for access. If there is a free version, I would be interested in learning how to access that as well. TY
"Thou who art darker than even darkness,
Thou who art deeper than even the night!
Thou, the Sea of Chaos, who drifts upon it,
Golden Lord of Darkness!
Hereby I call to thee,
Hereby I swear before thee!
Those who would stand against us,
All those who are fools,
By the power you and I possess,
Grant destruction equally upon them all!
GIGA SLAVE!"

User avatar
Faceman
AB Executive
Posts: 3156
Joined: Fri Sep 08, 2006 2:26 am
Location: Boston, MA

Re: Regarding the New England Anime Society, Inc. Lawsuit

Post by Faceman » Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:50 pm

Kalyoth wrote:
Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:22 pm
If you could, the links to the ruling etc. error out when attempting to open them via the link. Could you look into this as I am curious on the ruling etc.
Thanks.

FYI: Tried to locate this via PACER - they charge for access. If there is a free version, I would be interested in learning how to access that as well. TY
The link, there should be a download button in the upper right corner of your screen. Try that to download the whole zip file?
Chris O'Connell
Director of Public Relations 2017, 2018
Assistant Director of Public Relations 2015-2016
Webmaster 2010-2016
President of New England Anime Society, Inc.

Have a question? Private Message or Email me!

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests