Hunger Games Studio Sics Lawyer on Fans Trying to End Hunger

Illustration for article titled Hunger Games Studio Sics Lawyer on Fans Trying to End Hunger

Uh oh. You know what they say: A good deed never goes unpunished. And so, when a bunch of fans of The Hunger Games books partnered with Oxfam to launch a campaign called "Hunger Is Not a Game," it was only a matter of time before they received a strongly worded letter from Lionsgate, the studio behind the movie.


In the missive, Liat Cohen, Senior Vice President Business Affairs & Litigation at Lionsgate, writes that the campaign is "piggy backing off of our motion picture" and "causing damage to Lionsgate and our marketing efforts."

We understand and support your cause and mission. We are on the same side. We are looking for an amicable resolution. For a start we request that you immediately remove any mention of "Hunger is not a Game" from all of your websites and its affiliates and stop using the slogan in your interviews and publicity or press releases.

Cohen points out that Lionsgate has teamed up with two organizations fighting hunger: the UN's World Food Program and Feeding America. But business is business, and Cohen threatens to take down the Hunger Is Not a Game website "as a violation of our trademark and other intellectual property laws."

Yeah, the law is the law, but seriously, this is so The Capitol vs. The Districts. On the Hunger Is Not a Game website, there's a statement about how Katniss, Gale and the citizens of District 12 are forced to break the law to keep from starving. And the fans who partnered with Oxfam are breaking the law to feed people. Lionsgate can't crack down on this without seeming completely evil, and frankly, the right thing to do here is look the other way. Fans trying to send silver parachutes to the 1 in 7 people on this planet who go to bed hungry every night — close to one billion people — shouldn't be threatened with legal action.

EXCLUSIVE: As ‘The Hunger Games' Opens Big, Lionsgate Tries to Shut Down Anti-Hunger Advocates [Think Progress]



Good intentions and actions don't change the law or mean that someone who owns something shouldn't try and protect it. Feeding hungry people is good. And I understand that many many people believe that intellectual property rights are bunk and absurd in an Internet world. I disagree.

The Hunger is not a Game folks should change their name (and any process and keep doing what they're doing. Or, be so good at it that the Lionsgate folks are willing to give them a license. Otherwise, you can do good things and reach people and make a difference without stealing from others, I'm sure.