Ah, the Pig Pen, East Los Santos. I've blown many wads of cash there in my time, and left it about as fulfilled as I have any other strip club in real life. Speaking of unfulfillment and real life strip clubs, the PlayPen of East Los Angeles — notice any similiarities? — lost a federal appeal in a lawsuit against Rockstar Games, alleging the game infringed on its trademarks.
Even though Rockstar conceded that its Pig Pen was somewhat modeled on the real life PlayPen — I assume both are located in strip malls in really bad parts of town — the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals said there's not enough for an infringement claim. And it did so in an opinion that took every opportunity at snark. How dare they! Are they jurists or bloggers? Writes Judge Diarmuid F. O'Scannlain (note to self: New Warcraft name):
"Both 'San Andreas' and the PlayPen offer a form of lowbrow entertainment; besides the general similarity, they have nothing in common. The 'San Andreas' game is not complementary to the PlayPen; video games and strip clubs do not go together like a horse and carriage or, perish the thought, love and marriage."
I hope he was popping his suspenders with a spinning bowtie when he wrote that.
Ken RosenbergRobert F. Helfing wasn't happy with the outcome.
"This ruling now permits people who create artistic works that purport to convey the look and feel of a particular geographic location to use any trademark that appears on any building in that location in the name of art. When you use a trademark or logo of an existing business, as was done in our case, you create the impression that our client is somehow associated with the game, which is not the case."
Helfing hasn't discussed the possibility of an appeal, but that would naturally be to the U.S. Supreme Court. I'd love it if they granted cert for this. Jack Thompson would shit an exact replica of himself.