Feb 20, 2023

BAYC Logo Allegedly Illegally Trademarked Without License

The widely-recognized wolf skull logo of Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC), a premier non-fungible token (NFT) collection created by Yuga Labs, has been accused of trademark infringement. The image was originally produced by a company that specializes in drawing tutorials for children and beginners.

NFTs were designed to provide protection for artists and prevent the illegal use of intellectual properties, yet the same problem is now being attributed to Yuga Labs. Crypto Twitter user and NFT artist @Jdotcolombo recently noticed a post from April 5, 2021 on Easy Drawing Guides, which advertised a step-by-step drawing tutorial of a wolf skull.

This art, which closely resembled BAYC’s logo, raised suspicion of wrongdoing since BAYC’s Kennel Club collectibles were released on June 17, 2021. Easy Drawing Guides responded to the commotion by confirming that Yuga Labs had no license to use the drawing. To make matters worse, Yuga Labs proceeded to trademark the unlicensed logo as its own.

Easy Drawing Guides declared that the intellectual property rights for the drawing belonged to them, as it was their original drawing and protected by their Terms and Conditions. Cointelegraph verified that Easy Drawing Guides’ terms and conditions grant a non-transferable, non-exclusive, revocable, limited license to use and access the website solely for personal, non-commercial use.

BAYC supporters are split on the issue, with some believing that no intellectual property was breached, while others agree that Easy Drawing Guides should receive some form of compensation. Yuga Labs has yet to comment on the matter.

This is not the first time Yuga Labs has been involved in an intellectual property dispute. Co-founder of the BAYC copycat NFT collection RR/BAYC, Jeremy Cahen, filed an opposition notice against 10 trademark applications from Yuga Labs. In the notice, Cahen argued that Yuga Labs had abandoned any rights to certain logo and artwork designs due to BAYC NFT sales granting “all rights” of the digital images to the owners.

The incident has sparked a debate on the importance of NFTs in protecting intellectual property, as well as the need for proper licensing and promotion of NFTs. It also highlights the importance of NFT marketing and the role of web3 agencies in selling NFTs. NFT marketing agencies are becoming increasingly popular as more people are looking for ways to promote their digital art and collectibles. Twitter NFT marketing is also becoming popular, as it allows creators to reach a wider audience. It is important for creators to ensure that their intellectual property is properly protected and that they are using the correct licenses when promoting their NFTs.

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