Netflix wants to choose its own adventure where Bandersnatch trademark case magically vanishes

Asks judge to toss sueball from branching-plot book publisher

Netflix is adamant that the path of its Bandersnatch trademark lawsuit should be for the judge to throw the case out. How does El Reg respond?

Option 1: Write a serious story about Netflix's legal battle (go to paragraph 4)

Option 2: Write a sarcastic story about Netflix's legal battle in the style of a choose-your-own-adventure (go to paragraph 11)

You Chose Option 1

Streaming biz Netflix is being sued by Chooseco, owners of trademarks for the "Choose Your Own Adventure" book series, for the episode Bandersnatch, in which viewers got to pick what the main character – a video game developer – did next.

The focus of the challenge, lodged in January, was that the protagonist refers to the book on which his video game is based as a "choose-your-own-adventure" – but Netflix said that this is a "common and accurate phrase".

"The idea of a narrative storytelling device in which readers or viewers make their own choices is not protected by trademark law," it said.

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Chooseco later amended its complaint to add that the fictional publisher in the show uses "rounded color borders" on its video game packaging that is similar to the real-life books' borders.

Netflix's legal eagles say this claim is "even weaker" than the original as there is "nothing distinctive" about Chooseco's borders and consumers don't associate them with the firm.

It added that every ending in Bandersnatch "turns out horribly" for the main character, while in the kids' books you can complete the adventure successfully.

The streaming biz today asked the judge to toss the complaint, and is apparently unconcerned about the lawsuit's future, as it has introduced what the press are happily describing as another choose-your-own-adventure series: You vs Wild with Bear Grylls.

You Chose Option 2

El Reg is sued by Chooseco, owners of trademarks for the "Choose Your Own Adventure" book series, for its article about a sueball over Netflix's episode Bandersnatch, in which viewers got to pick what the main character – a video game developer – did next.

Lacking the legal resources of the multibillion-dollar streaming biz, the Vultures are unable to muster up a solid defence team and have to represent themselves during the case.

Constant referrals to "sueballs", scathing reports of the court's cloud-hosted systems and short, easy-to-read sentences in the court documents anger the judge, who sends the case to be tried in front of a jury made up of offended IT bosses. ®




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