On the 28th of January, independent Ukrainian artist Kuttysarkart posted a set of images detailing a DMCA claim from Riot Games which resulted in the takedown of her merchandise. The post was a cry for help, since the platform hosting the artist’s merchandise had refused to dispute the claim and there was seemingly no point of contact with Riot Games.
The potential reason for this claim was that the artist’s work (Arcane Flames) shares a similar name to Riot’s original animated series, Arcane. Users across social media, shared the news sparking outrage against the company.
As such, Riot issued an official statement, attributing this mistake as part of their routine intellectual property protection, alluding to the situation, offering an apology and somewhat confirming suspicions of the reason behind the claim.
Today at 12:58pm, KuttySarkArt posted an update stating that she had managed to get the merchandise reinstated and the claim rescinded after being put in contact with Riot Games.
Whilst this is cause for celebration, there is now the much larger question of who else has encountered a similar situation but lacked the following, influence and resources to seek aid. Any level of surface-level research would have revealed that KuttySarkArt’s work was in no way derivative of Arcane, being created several years earlier and featuring none of the characters, settings, concepts nor artstyle.
Several users have suggested that this was done as part of an automated process which has some credence given that any respectable legal professional would have carried out at least minimal due diligence and discovered this. Granted, this is unconfirmed.
ARCANE: HAILEE STEINFELD as VI in ARCANE Cr. NETFLIX © 2021
Personally, I believe this is highly irresponsible of the company and further similar conduct will result in damaging livelihoods. It’s sad that unfounded claims such as this seem to have no consequences on companies that issue them. I believe that, if there were any, Riot would have perhaps spent 3 seconds from their busy schedules of releasing skins to maybe read past the title of KuttySarkArt’s work.
Are you happy with outcome? Do you agree with what I’ve said? Go wild with you thoughts in the comment box!
As always, don’t forget to check out our Discord server where you can talk to me and the All Maverick team and community!