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I happened to name an app I wrote after a kind of Pokemon, it wasn't on purpose. The app isn't a game and has nothing to do with Pokemon. Am I at risk of being sued for copyright infringement?

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Pokemon names are trademarks by Nintendo.

Trademarks prevent other people from using names/logos etc. so that consumers dont mistake someone else for the logo owner.

However, the exclusivity that a trademark gives the trademark owner is limited to the industry that the trademark is registered to.

So you cant make a game called "The Pikachu Game", because the name's trademark probably extends to all video games.

But if you make a business app? You might get away with it.

So it boils down to how similar your product is to anything Nintendo makes.

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  • Similarity of the brand and the comparison of the business sectors are only two of many factors that may be considered for the question of whether it rises to an unlawful "likelihood of confusion". Other factors include the relative "strength" of the brand (i.e., distinctiveness and recognition) and the sophistication of the respective consumers. Lexus and Lexis may be phonetically identical brands but were ruled not "likely to cause confusion" because their customers would know the difference. – Upnorth Sep 6 '17 at 5:44

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