Palladium Books v. Trion Worlds–There Were Settlement Talks

The “Rift: Planes of Telara” trademark infringement lawsuit filed by Palladium Books is moving right along. After yesterday’s ferocious response from Trion to the lawsuit, Palladium made another attempt at getting discovery documentation from Trion. Trion argued against discovery in an earlier filing. The list of requested items is interesting, but there was mention made of some settlement talks between the two parties at an early point in the lawsuit.

Following service of the Complaint, Trion’s counsel asked for an extension of time to respond and indicated a desire to engage in settlement talks. Palladium agreed and for the next two weeks the parties had numerous settlement conversations. Palladium abstained from filing for an injunction or seeking leave for expedited discovery in order to save expenses for both parties while an informal resolution seemed possible.

Clearly, trying to avoid expensive legal conflicts through negotiation failed early on.

Most of today’s document regards Trion’s attempt to limit/delay discovery and various arguments about why the lawsuit belongs in a Michigan court. Trion argued that Michigan is the wrong venue for the lawsuit because it does not operate in the state and Palladium argued that Trion is planet-wide in its potential scope. Since there are likely  some MMORPG players/fans in Michigan. A bit dull, but I did find the list of items Palladium wants from Trion somewhat interesting.

Palladium should be entitled to discovery and full disclosure of, at the minimum:
• all internal communications and documents of Trion relating to Palladium or its Rifts game, to determine the extent to which Trion was aware of Palladium; that it might be infringing Palladium’s marks; and that the injury would be felt in Palladium’s home forum of Michigan;
• all advertising, promotions, and other materials that have been distributed in Michigan, “targeted” or otherwise;
• all contracts for distribution of product or advertising in Michigan, targeted or otherwise;
• a listing of all persons who have signed up for accounts with Trion (as locations may be ascertainable from e-mail addresses and internet IP addresses).
• a listing of all “fan sites” that have been established by Michigan residents;
• identification of contestants who have signed up for Trion’s contest, including all those from Michigan. (Trask Note: The contest is being used to establish jurisdiction, since anyone from any state can enter.)

Most of this discovery request seems related to the jurisdiction issue, but that first one about Trion being “aware” of Palladium products is critical. Email has a very long memory…

Here is the original document for your examination.

Palladium Books Discovery Filing

I will, of course, keep you updated.

Trask, The Last Tyromancer



Trask is a long-time gamer, world traveler and history buff. He hopes that his scribblings will both inform and advance gaming as a hobby.

2 thoughts on “Palladium Books v. Trion Worlds–There Were Settlement Talks

  • June 9, 2010 at 5:18 am

    Some of those requests make sense. Proving that the company had knowledge of Palladium and Rifts is basically what they have to prove to show that they were copied. (After all, dimensional portals and metaverses are hardly owned by Palladium!)

    However all of the moves that sound like they’re going after fans of this game.. seem horribly invasive at best. At worst, they’re assaulting potential fans of their own stuff.

  • June 9, 2010 at 3:58 pm

    Palladium’s not going after the fans. Trion’s trying to have the suit tried in another state. Palladium is only making the point that if there is marketing material aimed at or in Michigan, and fans based in Michigan, then Michigan is a viable venue for the trial.

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