Your Mom, ESA Is Very Upset

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Kotaku's response, to their credit, was go to hell. The letter is reproduced below, just to get in a little extra blog juice

To Whom It May Concern:

The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) owns both Federal Trademark and Federal Copyright Registrations for all of its ratings in a rectangular box, with a rating tag line. As such, the rating in a box design may only be used in connection with entertainment software that has been rated by the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) and under no circumstances may the ESRB ratings be modified, or used to sell merchandise.

It has come to our attention that Kotaku is advertising on its website, a t-shirt that is using an unauthorized “E” rating in a rectangular box (see attached). The rectangular box design and tag line on the t-shirt is virtually identical to the ESRB’s rating in a box design and tag line (hereinafter “rating in a box design”). We believe that this t-shirt ad will result in consumer confusion, and a substantial likelihood that the ESRB certification marks will face tarnishment and dilution.

This matter is of serious concern to the ESA. Therefore, we write to demand that your company immediately remove the t-shirt from your website, and cease from displaying the t-shirt, or any other rating in a box design similar to the ESRB’s, whether used in conjunction with promoting, or advertising the sale of merchandise or otherwise.

Please provide us confirmation that the t-shirt has been removed, by responding to this email within five (5) days. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at the number below.

Thank you for your immediate cooperation.

Christina L. Boone
Entertainment Software Association
317 Madison Avenue – 22nd Floor
New York, NY 10017

ESA Threatens Kotaku []