Ubisoft Abandons WATCH DOGS Trademark [UPDATE]
A recent post on NeoGAF reveals that Ubisoft has filed for the "express abandonment" of the WATCH DOGS trademark.
“Ubisoft currently has in the US six trademarks for Watch Dogs, some for game software and some for other things such as sweatpants and hosiery,” wrote NeoGAF member Rösti. “For whatever reason, they have filed an express abandonment for the primary application, serial number 85642398, which has the following good and services.”
Does this mean Watch Dogs is cancelled?
Probably not. Ubisoft has already spent a ton of time and money developing Watch Dogs, so it would be hard to imagine them cancelling it. It’s more likely that the game will now be using the stylized title “Watch_Dogs” - a variation that Ubisoft has been using in their marketing for the game. Still, it's strange that they wouldn't want to hold on to both trademarks.
Another possible (but less likely) explanation for the abandonment is that Ubisoft plans to release Watch Dogs as part of the Assassin’s Creed franchise. Developers hinted at E3 that Watch Dogs and Assassin’s Creed might exist in the same universe, so it’s not entirely unfathomable.
Until Ubisoft makes an official announcement, it's all speculation. What do you think?
A Ubisoft spokesperson contacted Polygon with the following statement:
"We are working directly with the USPTO on reinstating the trademark for Watch Dogs and it will be active again in the coming days. The matter has no impact on the Watch Dogs' development."
Ubisoft submitted a new filing to the United States Patent and Trademark Office today, asking the director of the office to prevent the abandonment because the original filing was fradulent.
"On February 1, 2014, Ubisoft Entertainment received an email from TEAS@uspto.gov notifying Ubisoft Entertainment that a Request for Express Abandonment had been filed in connection with Application Serial No. 85642398. The Request for Express Abandonment purports to be signed by the Chief Executive Officer of Ubisoft Entertainment, Yves Guillemot.
"Mr. Guillemot, however, did not sign the Request for Express Abandonment, nor did Ubisoft Entertainment file the Request for Express Abandonment. The Request for Express Abandonment is fraudulent and was not filed by Ubisoft Entertainment or its representative."