In a rather inexplicable turn of events, Sony is apparently trying to trademark the term ‘Let’s Play.’ It makes no sense- it’s a term used widely, and it has been used long before Sony ever got the idea to make a social centric console with the PS4. But hey, they’ve tried to do that, and it is what it is.
Except what it is is likely to fail. Even though the trademark application was originally shot down, because of its similarity to the already trademarked ‘Letz Play,’ any resubmission bid will still fail. The McArthur Law Firm, a US-based firm, sent a letter of protest to the US Patents and Trademarks Office to explain why this trademark filing makes no sense. The law firm listed over 50 examples of how the term has been, and continues to be used commonly in the video game world.
“Given the strength of this evidence, we are confident that Sony will not be able to overcome this rejection,” the letter says. “The term “Let’s Play” is now forever in the public domain.”
They, of course, managed to articulate it far better in legal terms than we could have ever managed- but Let’s Play is a term that’s part of the public vernacular. Trying to impose proprietary ownership on it is poor form on Sony’s part, very poor indeed.