|Not this sort of Wordle ...|
Earlier this month another case concerning a children's TV show came to light -- this time before the Patents County Court for England and Wales (PCC): Massey (Child) v Dinamo Productions Ltd  EWPCC 27 (13 June 2012). What happened here? Reshaun Massey commenced proceedings against Dinamo Productions Ltd on the basis that Dinamo's children's programme 'The Wordles' [nb 'The Wordles' appear to be part of a programme called 'The Abadas'] contained several similarities with a programme which Massey had written called 'The Wevils' and which he had submitted to the BBC Children's TV Department (CBeebies) and to another producer, Kavaleer Productions Limited, in around July and September 2010. Massey claimed that there were five similarities in the plots, themes and incidents which had been copied from between 'The Wevils' into 'The Wordles':
- 'Opens in on a nursery (house in theirs)'
- 'Get the picture book out of the toy box'
- 'Open the picture book and it comes to life'
- 'Be transported to a location each episode whilst learning about the location'
- The similarities between the name they previously entitled 'Abadas – The Wordles' to 'The Wevils'.
First, there was documentary evidence from Dinamo to the effect that all of the elements complained of were present in 'The Wordles' in 2009 before Massey claims to have created his synopsis in 2010 [says the IPKat, this demonstrates the virtue of never throwing away any creative material until after the successful conclusion of the legal action you didn't know you were going to face].
|... and not this sort of Weevil|
Fourthly, the need to be fair to Massey had to be balanced with the need to be fair to Dinamo. In circumstances where Massey had done nothing to address the major criticisms of his case which have been made by Dinamo, it was not incumbent upon the Court to fight Massey's case for him or to require Dinamo to incur the time and expense of preparing for trial.