Trademarks: is Quidditch being held back by a snitch?

Quidditch first appeared as a fictitious sport in the JK Rowling novel Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, where it is played by wizards and witches riding magical flying broomsticks. It famously continued to feature in later Harry Potter books, as well as the films. What is less well known is that fictional Quidditch inspired a real sport – albeit with non-flying brooms of course.

Fast forward to today and there are almost 600 teams across 40 countries playing real-world Quidditch. The International Quidditch Association has plans to grow the sport further. Ironically, it was recently reported that standing in the way of expansion is the name “Quidditch”. The sport is planning to rebrand as “Quadball”.

The “Quidditch” trademark is owned by Warner Bros Entertainment Inc, including in Australia. According to news reports, license fees are payable to Warner Bros for the use of the trademark.

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