Warner Brothers — a company all too keen to leap on anybody infringing its copyright — is being sued for unauthorised use of the Nyan Cat meme. Oops.
Ars Technica reports that Warner Brothers is facing a legal battle because the Nyan Cat and Keyboard Cat memes were used in a video game called Scribblenauts, published by WB Games. The two memes features as characters on the Nintendo DS game.
While the two viral videos were made by separate parties, their creators teamed up to sue Warner Brothers and 5th Cell, the developers of the game. They argue that the accused "have used 'Nyan Cat' and 'Keyboard Cat,' even identifying them by name, to promote and market their games, all without plaintiffs' permission and without any compensation to plaintiffs."
The complaint describes Nyan Cat, quite amusingly as "a character with a cat's face and a body resembling a horizontal breakfast bar with pink frosting sprinkled with light red dots" that "flies across the screen, leaving a stream of exhaust in the form of a bright rainbow in its wake." Truth.
Warner Brothers is being charged with both copyright and trademark infringement, and the case will play out in the Central District of California. [Ars Technica]