The Court Transcript For The Hasbro Vs. Asus Transformer Prime Case Is Hilarious

Last year it was announced that Hasbro was going to sue Asus over the branding of the Transformer Prime; apparently, people all over the planet were confusing a tablet with shape-shifting robots. Now the case has been settled — Hasbro lost — but the court ruling is quite hilarious.

Hilarious by the standards of most other court rulings, of course. At times, this thing reads more like an i09 article than something a judge would say. As Paid Content has it, the judge explained:

"The Autobots are led by the virtuous Optimus Prime character, while the Decepticons follow the powerful Megatron. According to Hasbro, Optimus Prime is intended to epitomize honour, duty, leadership, and freedom...

"In the third film, an Autobot character known as "Brains" disguised itself as a Lenovo ThinkPad Edge Plus laptop [...] Hasbro developed the "Transformers Prime" animated television series, which began airing in approximately November 2010. The series focuses on the life and story of the Optimus Prime character. "Prime" was added to the "Transformers" mark in the program's name to emphasise this focus. Thus far, the series has received several Emmy nominations and awards and has been aired in 170 countries...

"There is nothing gimmicky about the Eee Pad Transformer or the Eee Pad Transformer Prime, nor can it be said that there is any similarity in the use or function between Hasbro and Asus's


Hasbro, as you may expect, aren't happy with the ruling. Maybe it should pick a proper legal battle next time? [Paid Content]

Image by Sudhamshu under Creative Commons license


    This case needs to be chronicled in a Phoenix Wright game. That would make my week.

    There are actual amusing court rulings. My favourite is the one where the judge rips both parties a new one for submitting their briefs in crayon. Here's some others.

      I don't think the Judge literally meant that the submissions were in crayon.

    I dunno, the name was an obvious lift.

      The trademark would have only been in relation to cartoons, toys, possibly video games, branded clothing etc. You can't just have a trademark over everything if you're using what are essentially generic titles. If Asus had called their product the Optimus there might have been a different outcome, but as it stands, Hasbro's mark would only extend as far as applications related to the toy/cartoon.

      Given both terms were lifted from electronics components in the first place, its a bit much to let hasbro claim the combo.

    Yet there is no lawsuit against LG's Optimus line of Phones ???

    Maybe if the Asus was really Soundwave in disguise they'd have a case I guess?

      Soundwave, could be a good name for a new MP3 player :P

        Or a music festival?

    Still makes more sense than the whole "Scrolls" debacle imo.

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