Q: What is the legality of creating and selling a board game based off a fictional board game from a TV show?
A few examples are: The Cones of Dunshire from the TV show 'Parks and Recreation', CharDee MacDennis from the TV show 'It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia', and True American from the TV show 'New Girl'.
A: For copyright purposes, just as you cannot copy a real game, you may not copy from someone's imaginary game. In both instances, someone created the board game and to the extent the board was an expression of the idea of the game, then that would be off limits without the copyright owner's permission. However, if there is an "idea" of the game and you can determine what that idea is, and then come up with your original expression for the game board, you may be in a better position if challenged for infringement. Best to consult a local IP attorney to work out the specifics.
Barry E. Janay agrees with this answer
A: You'd need to contact the IP owner (NBC / News Corp) to get licensee rights to use the IP that is associated with their shows. It can be done, but it will take an investment of time and some money spent on legal. It's a bad idea to go it alone since even just speaking to them you should have an NDA in place.
Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.
The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.
Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.