Log in


Now in its twelfth year, Class 46 is dedicated to European trade mark law and practice. This weblog is written by a team of enthusiasts who want to spread the word and share their thoughts with others.

Want to receive Class 46 by email?
Click here subscribe for free.

Who we all are...
Anthonia Ghalamkarizadeh
Birgit Clark
Blog Administrator
Christian Tenkhoff
Fidel Porcuna
Gino Van Roeyen
Markku Tuominen
Niamh Hall
Nikos Prentoulis
Stefan Schröter
Tomasz Rychlicki
Yvonne Onomor
Germany: Michael "Bully" Herbig v "Bully - die Ehrenrunde"

Several German magazines and websites report of a trade mark dispute between German comedian and actor Michael "Bully" Herbig and Software producer Take Two Interactive regarding the release of a computer game called "Bully - Die Ehrenrunde". The German word "die Ehrenrunde" translates into 'lap of honour' and colloquially also means 'repeating a year in school'. Herbig became famous in Germany in the 1990ies with his comedy show "Bullyparade" and is widely known under the name "Bully".

The computer game features a teenager as its main protagonist, who occasionally has to "get rough" with his surroundings at a boarding school. Michael "Bully" Herbig is of the view that the computer game infringes his trade mark rights and his personality rights and does not want to be associated with a violent computer game. The defendant argues that the game title did not refer to the actor but was a reference to the English colloquial word "to bully". The defendant's lawyers are quoted as saying that Herbig was not known as a computer game producer and as such there was no likelihood of confusion; furthermore many things were already called "Bully": there was a VW van and "bully" was also a term used in ice hockey. The Regional Court of Munich (Landgericht München) reportedly advised the actor after the intial hearing of the case that his chances of success are low and the basis of his claim was "at least difficult". The judges also reportedly tested the computer game themselves and did not find it "too violent".

It is an interesting footnote that the computer game already had to be re-branded into "Canis Canem Edit" for the Australian market and some other European countries due to the negative connotations assoicated with the English word "to bully". The ruling of the Munich court is expected for mid September.

Posted by: Birgit Clark @ 20.40
Tags: bully, computer game, German trade marks, trade mark dispute,
Sharing on Social Media? Use the link below...
Perm-A-Link: https://www.marques.org/blogs/class46?XID=BHA584
Reader Comments: 0
Post a Comment

MARQUES does not guarantee the accuracy of the information in this blog. The views are those of the individual contributors and do not necessarily reflect those of MARQUES. Seek professional advice before action on any information included here.

The Class 46 Archive








+44 (0)116 2747355

9 Cartwright Court, Cartwright Way
Bardon, Leicestershire
LE67 1UE


Ingrid de Groot
Internal Relations Officer
Alessandra Romeo
External Relations Officer
James Nurton
Newsletter Editor
Robert Harrison

Signup for our blogs.
Headlines delivered to your inbox