Friday, March 16, 2012

Power Rangers Fight for Rights of Shapes

Power RangersImage via WikipediaThe crazy, undeniably ridiculous show that came out years ago called “Power Rangers” was a fad that reminded everyone how awful popular things can really be in this world. However, people really enjoyed the show, and kids really started kicking things and wearing leisure suits with helmets. Its popularity makes it relevant, and the show’s place in pop culture makes it wonderfully ironic to like these days. In fact, any gear resembling the Power Rangers signature suits might be considered hot property, whether intentionally or not.


The Power Rangers, or rather the owners of the Power Rangers, are suing a small business for willful copyright infringement. This small online business sells hooded sweatshirts that can be customized to match your desired awfulness. Again, since awfulness is being stylish or at least ironically stylish these days, the hooded sweatshirts have been selling well apparently. So the Power Rangers and their people heard about these upstart hoodie slingers and noticed something odd about the design they were using. They noticed that the awfulness looked eerily similar to the awfulness they helped bring into the world years before. In fact, not only was the awfulness so similar, you throw a helmet on the hooded sweatshirt, and you got yourself half of a power ranger. The signature shapes and pattern of the Power Rangers’ suits are copied almost identically onto these hoodies. So naturally, it’s time to get the lawyers involved and to make a big deal out of something that is so very much not a big deal.


The Power Rangers’ power attorney squad will be claiming copyright infringement of intellectual property, although the intellectualness of this property is really very minimal. Perhaps it’s this minimalistic style that has everyone hoping for a hoodie, but doesn’t that bring up another question? How minimalistic does intellectual property go? Does it go as far as a diamond shape in the middle of a colored shirt? Sure it seems they look similar, but when something is so simple, it’s easy to believe that someone else might accidentally come up with the same minimal design. Therefore, argue all you want about copyright infringement, but willful copyright infringement seems a stretch. I mean, who looks at the Power Rangers’ suits and says, “Those are outstanding, let’s risk getting sued to make hoodies that look like Power Rangers”. I hope this is not the case, but either way, there will be a case and many peoples’ time will be wasted.