Star Trek: Discovery Wins Copyright Lawsuit Against Tardigrade Video Game
CBS and Netflix re-affirmed an earlier win in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit over a copyright infringement lawsuit filed against both companies due to a plotline in the first season of Star Trek: Discovery that a video game creator alleged infringed upon the plot of his unreleased game. The video game was about a giant tardigrade who traveled through outer space and a similar creature played a key role in Star Trek Discover Season 1.
After the Second Circuit lower court had already dismissed the claims, the Court of Appeals agreed in upholding the lower court ruling that both the video game and the TV show were relying on uncopyrightable scientific facts about tardigrades and their ability to survive in outer space.Click the button below to start this article in quick view. Start now
Anas Osama Ibrahim Abdin was working on a video game called Tardigrades, about a space station botanist who merged with a giant tardigrade and traveled through outer space. Tardigrades are microscopic creatures that exist all over the planet Earth and are famous for their ability to withstand extreme conditions, whether it be extreme cold, heat or radiation. A pair of experiments even revealed that tardigrades could survive the rigors of outer space exposure (including direct UV radiation).
A major plotline in the first season of Star Trek: Discovery involves the Discovery encountering a giant space tardigrade-like creature who the crew soon discovers has a sort of symbiotic relationship with the mycelial network in the Discovery's spore drive that allows the ship to control the spore drive and cause the starship to teleport.
When it became clear that the repeated jumps were hurting the creature (dubbed "Ripper"), specialist Michael Burnham freed the animal.
Since it is a known scientific fact that tardigrades can survive in outer space, the court did not feel that the idea was novel enough to be copyrightable. The court ruled, “Abdin’s space-traveling tardigrade is an unprotectable idea because it is a generalized expression of a scientific fact—namely, the known ability of a tardigrade to survive in space. By permitting Abdin to exclusively own the idea of a space-traveling tardigrade, this Court would improperly withdraw that idea from the public domain and stifle creativity naturally flowing from the scientific fact that tardigrades can survive the vacuum of space.”
The court also noted that there were no other similarities between the stories between the show and the video game.
More on this: 558 stories
- Star Trek TNG Almost Had A Different Data
- Star Trek: Lower Decks Introduces a New Starfleet Division
- Discovery Brings Back A Big Star Trek Element In Season 3
- Star Trek: The Next Generation: Wil Wheaton's proud of Wesley's legacy
- Star Trek: Noah Hawley's Movie Will Question Humanity's Role in the Federation
- Star Trek's Original Movie Timeline is Finally About To Make Sense
- Which Star Trek TOS Character Is Your Soulmate, Based On Your Zodiac?
- Star Trek: Lower Decks Takes a Page from The Thing
- Star Trek: Lower Decks Brings Back THIS TNG-Era Alien
- Join Gowron and Martok to learn more about Klingon culture
- Star Trek's Future Can Perfectly Redeem Wesley Crusher
- IDW Publishing Trek Comics For December
- Everything We Know About The Upcoming Star Trek Movies
- NYCC Adds Star Trek: Discovery, Lower Decks and The Stand to Virtual Panel Lineup
- Amazon to Produce Chris Pine-Thandie Newton Thriller 'All the Old Knives'
- Star Trek: Lower Decks Episode 7 Shows the Freaky Side of Starfleet
- Star Trek Finally Improved TNG's Most Hated Captain
- Star Trek: Lower Decks Recap, Season 1 Episode 7
- Star Trek: Wil Wheaton wants to reunite with Sir Patrick Stewart in Picard
- Star Trek At New York Comic-Con
- Star Trek: Picard Wins Emmy Award
- Noah Hawley's new Star Trek would not bring back prior cast
- Noah Hawley's Star Trek movie doesn't include Kirk or Picard
- Star Trek: Picard Theory Reveals An Unexpected Doctor Who Connection
- Star Trek: Discovery & The Stand Panels Set For NYCC 2020