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Goodbye Kennie, Hello Inky!

Apparently, “Kennie” was a little too close to “KenKen” for Bob Fuhrer, who sent the following missive this morning:

Dear Mr. Bumgardner,

I am President of Nextoy, LLC and KenKen, LLC, which owns
and controls all rights in the KenKen® and Kendoku® brands
of mathematical logic puzzles. I have recently learned that
you are publishing puzzles under the name KENNIE, which
is an infringement on our registered KenKen® trademark.

KenKen® is a coined term and is thus an inherently
distinctive, strong trademark when used in connection with
Nextoy’s mathematical puzzle games. Your use of the name
KENNIE in the title of your puzzles constitutes passing off
and falsely implies that your puzzles originate from Nextoy or
are otherwise approved, sponsored or endorsed by Nextoy,
the makers of the genuine ‘KENKEN’ puzzles. Accordingly, I
must insist that you immediately cease and desist from all
uses of the designation KENNIE or other use of our distinctive
“KEN” term, and from the manufacture, sale, distribution or
further use of any puzzles or other materials that infringe
Nextoy’s rights.

I trust that your infringement of Nextoy’s rights was
unintentional but as I am sure you can appreciate, the KenKen®
brand is a valuable asset and we must be diligent in ensuring
that our intellectual property rights are protected and maintained.
If your infringement of Nextoy¹s KenKen® brand was indeed
unintentional, your cooperation in immediately ceasing all
infringing activities and complying with the other terms of this
demand will be a significant factor in determining how far
Nextoy decides to press this matter, including its decision to
seek monetary damages, lost profits, equitable remedies, and
other relief as may be proper under the circumstances.

I look forward to your cooperation in remedying this situation
in the most amicable manner possible. If you have any
questions concerning the foregoing, please do not hesitate to
contact me. I look forward to your positive response.

Robert Fuhrer
KenKen Puzzle, LLC (subsidiary of Nextoy, LLC)
39 Washington Ave.
Pleasantville, NY 10570

So… I am henceforth renaming my Kennies to Inkies.

Enjoy the Inkies!

4 Responses to “Goodbye Kennie, Hello Inky!”

  1. Stefan Says:

    SCNR: “Oh my God, they killed Kennie! …You bastards!”
    (just citing) :-)

    I hope I understand the letter correctly in that you don’t have to pay a warning fee — here in Germany this could easily cost 500..1000 €.

  2. Erik Wennstrom Says:

    Wait, wait, wait… They trademarked any derivative of the Japanese word for “clever” for use in puzzles? That seems a bit… broad.

    I mean, I understand it’s not worth fighting for, but that still seems a little ridiculous.

    Hm…maybe if they’re only fighting it for puzzles that are very similar to their KenKen puzzles.

  3. Mal Says:

    Simps. I’m surprised they haven’t created blue murder because you said that your Inkies are “more satisfying” than their puzzles.
    However, thanks to Big Bob’s nastygram, I shall never purchase another NexToy product of any sort. So I got THAT goin’ for me; which is good.
    Wishing you every success,

  4. Anakowi Says:

    Hello, my name is Kenken Takase III, named after my great grandfather. Some say that I am such an enigma, they seek my company as a kind of game. I published myself as “kenken”, as one does in Japan when inviting customers to partake of noble hosting services. I will now change my name to “ever-clever” before I arrive in the west bringing the scintillating game of conversation to afternoon tea parties.