Yuga Labs files lawsuit against Ryder Ripps
Over minting copies of Bored Apes
Yuga Labs, the company behind popular NFT project Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC), has filed a lawsuit against Ryder Ripps for scamming buyers with copycat NFTs in a "deliberate effort to harm Yuga Labs at the expense of consumers."
Ripps, who identifies himself as a conceptual artist, programmer, and creative director, is the creator of RR/BAYC, a copycat NFT collection on Ethereum that features images of all 10,000 Bored Apes he did not purchase.
The lawsuit claims that original BAYC images were used and accused Ripps of marketing the NFTs as official BAYC products. Yuga Labs’ trademarks were also allegedly used in Ripps’ “Ape Market” NFT marketplace. It adds that this is “no mere monkey business” and that Ripps’ goal was to “harm Yuga Labs at the expense of consumers.”
“We will continue to be transparent with our community as we fight these slanderous claims,” Yuga Labs said on Twitter. “In order to put a stop to the continuous infringement, and other illegal attempts to bring harm to us and the BAYC community, we have filed a lawsuit against the responsible parties. We will continue exploring and pursuing all legal options at our disposal.”
On May 13th, Ripps began minting his RR/BAYC NFTs to protest and educate people regarding BAYC and the framework of NFTs. The collection was delisted from Foundation on May 17th, when Yuga Labs sent a DMCA takedown request.
OpenSea, the largest NFT marketplace, has since removed RR/BAYC because of "a claim of intellectual property infringement." Prior to this, the collection sold out and saw nearly $3.5 million in total volume.
Ripps responded to the lawsuit on Twitter with the terms people who purchased RR/BAYC’s agreed to, which says the customer “understands that this is a new mint of BAYC imagery, re-contextualizing it for educational purposes, as protest and satirical commentary.”
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