On Oct. 26, Yuga Labs, the company behind the popular Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) NFT collection, announced that two individuals who infringed on its brand had been ordered by the court to pay damages and cease their infringing activities.
The company wrote in a statement:
“After the court ruling against Ryder Ripps and Jeremy Cahen for infringing Yuga [Labs’] intellectual property, today they’ve been ordered to cease all sales and marketing … They must pay [$1.575 million] in damages, Yuga’s attorneys’ fees, transfer their fake apes’ smart contract, and relinquish related online assets.”
Ripps and Cahen were involved in the creation of a non-fungible token collection called RR/BAYC, a parody collection featuring images virtually identical to those in the official collection. One RR/BAYC store page notes that “you can’t copy an NFT,” apparently satirizing that idea by showing that the underlying artwork can, in fact, be copied.
The parody collection also served to draw critical attention to Yuga Labs’ alleged Nazi and far-right influences, another factor in Yuga Labs’ complaint.
Following the latest filing, Yuga Labs called the case “dramatically different” from most other infringement cases because the two defendants used satire and parody to justify their use of the BAYC trademarks in creating the infringing collection.
Defendants will pay nearly $1.6M
Ripps and Cahen are now required to pay almost $1.575 million to Yuga Labs, in part derived from $1.366 million in initial sale profits and $117,309 in resale profits.
The defendants will receive certain deductions as they are required to transfer a smart contract controlling unminted NFTs valued at $106,055. They will also receive a $108,037 deduction because of payments that they made to two other business partners.
Ripps and Cahen will also transfer various web domains to Yuga Labs; they are additionally restricted from selling products with the Bored Ape trademark.
Despite those injunctions, the RR/BAYC collection is still in circulation. It is unclear whether marketplaces that still support the collection will delist it.
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