Wrong coat of arms causes trouble: Does Football Manager 2020 violate Manchester United rights? This question is currently the subject of a legal dispute. The accuser is the English football record champion Manchester United, the accused are Sega and Sports Interactive, the makers of the Football Manager series.
What exactly is the litigation about?
What is the problem?
In contrast to the competition from FIFA or PES, the Football Manager may hardly use official licenses. For example, he may not use many club logos (for example, that of ManU) and uses substitute graphics instead. According to one British Guardians report
- The name of the club is used extensively in Football Manager 2020.
- Mods are expressly supported in the FM 20. This would allow players to do that Download the protected logo and patch yourself into the game. This also sees ManU’s rights violated.
- As mentioned, the real coat of arms of ManU is not shown in Football Manager because there are no rights for it. Instead, a generic logo next to the lettering Manchester United shown. The club disagrees. He would prefer that the creators acquire a license and then use the real coat of arms.
A ManU lawyer made it clear that Manchester United was one of the best known and most valuable brands in the world. The income from license sales is “very significant”. Manchester United fans would expect to see the real club crest next to the name.
What does the other side say?
Sega and Sports Interactive see things differently. After all, the name Manchester United has been used in Football Manager for many years. So far, there have never been any problems. The use of a random, generic logo makes it clear that one does not have a coat of arms license.
A ban on the use of the name “Machester United” is disproportionate. In addition, Sega is surprised at the indictment because the Cooperation worked smoothly for years. For example, players and officials at the club had previously been sent copies of the Football Manager and received positive comments and tweets from them.
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This is the current status: Following the response from Sega and SI, Manchester United asked to revise the indictment. A decision by the responsible judge is still pending. Football Manager 2020 is currently extremely popular – in March the FM doubled its player record.