Today slashdot reports that Fuji

Today slashdot reports that Fuji Television, the creator of the best show on television, has issued cease and desist orders to all Iron Chef fansites requiring that they remove all Fuji-owned graphics and sound. Perhaps rather than writing angry letters to Fuji TV and threatening a boycott (as one slashdot reader suggested,) we should instead take a cue from Apogee and offer them a ride on the cluetrain, so to speak. Apogee Software (makers of the popular Duke Nukem games) has developed a license agreement laying out strict rules under which fan sites can use Apogee trademarks – perhaps the slashdot reader remembers when this came up a few days ago. While the Apogee license in its current form is admittedly problematic, the concept seems pretty groundbreaking. Fuji doesn’t need to issue a half-dozen cease and desist letters to protect its rights – it can simply issue terms under which fan sites may or may not use Fuji property. Hopefully such terms would tend toward allowing fan sites the freedom to celebrate the show, while protecting the rights of the Fuji to conrol how those marks are used.

This situation reminds me of the best observation I heard about the whole Napster/Offspring situation – if Napster were really cool, like Offspring had hoped, they would have sent Offspring a licensing agreement to sell their merchandise rather than a cease and desist.

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