Recently a BitShares copyright infringement occurred when a group of holders, lead by Twitter (Bue) launched a fork of the blockchain using the name ‘New BitShares’ with malicious intention of destroying reputation of original chain (e.g. prior to split-fork, Binance has reported that was contacted by same group to ask Binance to migrate BitShares gateway to their software release instead of original one from BitShares GitHub repository. Luckily with help of reasonable Chinese holders, technical side of BitShares development, legal and Binance itself, that was just an attempt of event).
We have to bring this notice publicly on request of the trademark owner and BitShares.org domain holder Move Institute (non-profit, Slovenia).
No permission was sought in using the trademark, neither was the project endorsed by any BitShares founding or core members. On the contrary, `New BitShares` is launched as a “fix” for broken consensus on original BitShares, while it’s just illegal refinance scheme by group of holders.
They also listed the token on several exchanges with the abbreviated token name $NBS. BitShares trademark violations are illegal by rule of law in Europe and beyond, as defined by the EUIPO listing.
As such, ‘New BitShares’ exists and was started as intentional copyright infringement and attack to the brand of `BitShares`.
Additionally, EUIPO is legally binding by several bilateral and cooperation intellectual property initiatives in other non-EU countries.
Move Institute will be in contact directly with the businesses concerned. Listed below (for reference only) are the affected exchanges and domains/websites.
Legal course of actions
By listing NBS token under the name ‘New BitShares’, exchanges will be notified of the BitShares trademark violations. As registered businesses, they will receive formal notice by email/fax and legally binding notices to this effect. As per Coinmarketcap list includes Binance, MXC, Huobi, BigOne, Biki, ZB.com, ZBG, WazirX, and few others.
Domain owners and their respective registrars – for websites falsely representing BitShares will also be contacted for unlawful use that is not falling just under Intellectual property area but as well to ICANN violations in general. Most importantly, this applies not only to the EU, but any locations the website is accessible from, and covered by EUIPO or it’s mutual agreements.
Domains include newbitshares.org (intentional copyright infringement, SEC violation of initial offering through airdrop, no legal, spreading miss-information about Brand), dpos.club (posts removal), btsgh.com (intentional copyright infringement, spreading miss-information about Brand), and nbs.plus(intentional copyright infringement,spreading miss-information about Brand)
Additional SEC related concern: newbitshares.org as legal representative of the blockchain project should be by nature owned by non-profit company/organization. In the past, bitshares.org as originally given to APAsia Tech Co., LTD. was for the same reasons moved away to Move Institute as non-profit legal representative. In case of `New BitShares` project and website newbitshares.org – owner registered is for-profit Beijing Monelolita Clothing Co., Ltd. who is not even related to IT – far from crypto industry.
All related accounts and IP’s are collected from the BitSharesTalk for further legal actions if necessary.
BitShares blockchain and software derivates around/from it, are open source software where in addition to other features, anyone can create and name a cryptographic token or even replicate entire technology. However clear rules and laws outline global usage of trademarks are saying that you can’t “clone” actual Brand of “BitShares”. As a result, general international business law and common sense tells us it is fraudulent to knowingly use a registered trademark without permission. Thus all legal, trademark, copyright or other types of practicalities are also entirely the responsibility of the issuer/user. Move Institute, (Slovenia) are managing BitShares trademark violations.
Examples of definition for trademarks in crypto (for your own interest compare to classes and submission of our trademark – we are one class away and one class advanced for filling in US/International trademark):
If you’re concerned for any social media accounts, companies, brands or even individuals claiming to be ‘from BitShares’, or otherwise utilizing the ‘BitShares’ name or logo that doesn’t appear endorsed, please contact us.