Font Bureau, Inc., a Boston-based designer and marketer of type face fonts, is suing NBC for trademark infringement.
They say NBC overused their fonts.
Cityfile, which broke the story of the suit first, notes the fonts were used in fall campaigns for Jay Leno’s new show, Saturday Night Live and the Late Show with Jimmy Fallon.
CNBC is also named as a defendant — fuzzy photos entered as exhibits show the allegedly infringing fonts on CNBC web pages (relevant exhibit is below).
The fonts in question hail from the Bureau Grotesque, Interstate and Antenna font families (in case you are familiar).
The lawsuit says NBC paid for only one licence for the fonts, which meant it could use them only on a single computer. CNBC’s uses of the fonts are “entirely unlicensed,” according to Font Bureau.
To those who never venture past Times New Roman, $2 million in damages for font use may seem pretty crazy. But for graphic designers — who trade tweets about such things as new Pantone colours and type face innovations — fonts are big business.
Even so, as the WSJ Law Blog notes, this could be the biggest suit ever that will include deposition questions involving the words “sans serif.”
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