Gibson taking Activision to court

Gibson have some strange issues going on; to wait three years before making legal claims is strange.

Someone at Gibson happened to see a news story about the piles of cash Activision is making off of Guitar Hero.

Stranger since Activision has licensed the rights to use Gibson’s model for their controller and GH3 exclusively uses Gibson guitars in the game. I guess something recently went sour with the partnership.

Activision could have sold more GH3 controllers (Licensed by Gibson) for the PS3 if they weren’t such assholes. (Solidarity, my Rock Band brothers!)

Must be all the PS3 users bitching because activision wont let HMX release a patch to make the GH guitars work with Rockband.


Based on what’s in the article it sounds like Gibson is demanding a rather broad definition of their patent. If it’s upheld it seems like almost any video game related guitar would require their approval.

There’s no point in suing someone with no money. Wait until they do.

Ya, Gibson’s patent is for a Guitar, 3D display, and a simulated rock concert… this will be thrown out of court pretty quickly.
Patents don’t really count for much anyway. You are entitled to have a device which has a patents final outcome, as long as the way you get that outcome is different than the patents.

"a method for simulating a live performance using a musical instrument, a 3D headset with stereo speakers, and a prerecorded concert. "

hmmm… anyone else see a problem with that? The Guitar Hero controller isn’t a musical instrument.


crosses arms

Yeah, I’m not sure what’s up with this when it seems really clear that this isn’t even close to the patent when you read it with one eye closed and the other really squinty.

Is GHIV going to include a “head-mounted 3D display”?

Given that Gibson has actually partnered with Activision on the GH games, it seems likely that a judge is going to ask them why they didn’t raise this concern earlier. As with other types of intellectual property, nonenforcement (and particularly knowing nonenforcement, as is the case here) can result in the loss of the patent.


You know, if could be that somebody (their lawyer, perhaps) pointed out that this MIGHT be something close to their patent and that they needed to do this in order to show that they are actively protecting it. That’s really the only thing that makes a lot of sense. Clearly, Activision wasn’t likely to pay them for the privilege of using a patent that they aren’t using.

I think they are just hoping to make some money through retroactive licensing. It seems like an unlikely scenario, though. The original game has had two sequels and a number of expansion packs at this point, and Gibson has been a party to all of them. I suspect a judge will tell Gibson that the time to protect their patent has long since come and gone.

Fuck Gibson. As if their lawsuit against PRS Guitars wasn’t idiotic enough.

Better living through litigation. In baseball, this process is “arbitration”; i.e. player thinks he’s worth more money than the contract he signed with the team owner says he is.

Hey! I love that song!

I think the fact that Gibson has been a “high-profile partner” with Activision on the GH games is going to pretty much prove implied consent and invalidate these claims. Gibson’s lawyers must be high.

This just sounds like they completely forgot about the patent, then years later someone dug it up and said “hey, wait a minute, we can sue! WEEEEEEEE!”

Pretty much.