Over the years, we’ve seen a lot of stories about fan works and videos taken down by Nintendo. There were the cases of AM2R and Pokemon Uranium, which caused a ton of controversy a few years back. There was the Patreon for Super Mario Bros Z and the 101 character Mario Kart video, which showed Nintendo went after animations as much as they did actual games.
And then there’s the recent story about a Princess Peach porn game shut down after 8 years in development. As a result, while Nintendo takedowns are certainly rarer than people think, they’re still more common than those by competitors, and paint the company in a very bad light as a result of that.
However, today’s story is a bit different. Why? Because it’s not a fan project that’s been shut down by Nintendo, it’s a fan creator who’s apparently been outright sued by the company. One who’s in a field that no one would expect the company to care about in the slightest.
No, we’re not talking about Kaze Emanuar. We’re talking about Pokeprincxss, a Twitch streamer and TikTok star who based their persona around the Pokemon series. Apparently Nintendo went after her for selling merchandise under said name (including stuff based on Poke Balls and other items from the Pokemon series), and made her hand over all profits from said activities. They’ve also forced her to rebrand too, with her TikTok account apparently now being renamed ‘digitalprincxss’ and the trademark she had on her original username being seized by the company.
It’s an interesting situation, and one that leaves us split about the implications.
On the one hand, yes this creator clearly used Nintendo’s property to their advantage here. Getting a trademark for a name based on a Nintendo series and selling branded property that could be mistaken as official was a rookie move, and one that probably wasn’t going to work out well in the case of a lawsuit.
At the same time however… is that really unique online?
Cause from what we can tell, there are actually quite a lot of streamers, YouTubers, fan site owners and others like them which have both created known brands based on Nintendo IPs and used their characters and works for merchandising purposes. For instance, I know one major Mario Kart YouTuber who features items and characters from that series on their merchandise. So are they at risk of being sued here?
Are creators like Mayro, SimpleFlips, Boundary Break/Shesez and SwankyBox going to end up in the crosshairs here at some point? What about people with Nintendo related usernames in general?
After all, it’s not as if ‘Pokeprincxss’ is that obviously infringing on that front. Thousands of people have usernames like that, and we’re sure at least a decent percentage of them became big names on Twitch or YouTube because of it. Are they all potentially targets in situations like this? How ‘big’ does a content creator need to get before Nintendo thinks you’re a risk to their IPs?
And while the adult content side might have played into a bit, that doesn’t seem too unique either. There are lots of creators putting out fan works and content that Nintendo might find ‘inappropriate’. Do they need to worry too?
It’s all rather vague, and raises many worrying questions for online content creators, especially those with a Nintendo focus or Nintendo related usernames.
Still, what are your thoughts on this situation? Was Nintendo right to sue Pokeprincxss over this stuff?
Tell us your thoughts on the matter in the comments below, on the Gaming Latest forums, or on our Discord server today!