Pachter: IW Won't Get MW Rights, But Will Get Money
The Activision/Infinity Ward war is now in full swing, so it's time to see what the experts think.
Well, Wedbush Morgan industry analyst Michael Pachter thinks it would be "terrible" for Activision if Zampella and West won the rights to the franchise, but at the same time, he believes the two plaintiffs will indeed get some cash. In speaking to Critical Gamer, Pachter had this to say about the pending lawsuits:
...I think it is highly unlikely that Zampella/West will win the rights to the brand. I have not seen their contracts (I am a lawyer), but my understanding from the news commentary about the suit is that they had the rights to supervise and control modern warfare versions of the game under their old contract. What was not reported is whether these rights were granted to them as employees (likely). If so, when they are no longer employees, they presumably lose those rights.
The situation is analogous to firing the coach of a sports team, who continues to claim the right to set the the team’s line up. I don’t think that they will win any rights over the brand, but they may win some money. With 1.3 billion shares, the amount sought is only around $0.02/share, so it won’t cripple Activision."
We'll go with that, but what if it's true that Zampella and West were wrongfully terminated, as they are alleging? I think it's clear Activision fired those guys so they couldn't retain the rights to the franchise, because the publisher wants those rights back. But I'm no lawyer and I certainly don't have all the facts, so take what I say with a grain of salt. The bottom line is that we could be hearing about these lawsuits for quite some time, which will do little to help Activision's ailing public image.
3/5/2010 10:41:29 AM Ben Dutka