Slate reports on the recent efforts of Hasbro Inc., maker of the popular game Scrabble, to claim and assert copyright ownership over lists of words used by Scrabble players and tournaments. Digital versions of Scrabble word lists have been circulating online for more than two decades, and in some instances have been compiled by the players themselves. In addition to the practical difficulties in policing the circulation of such lists on the Internet, Hasbro’s action also raises the interesting question of whether a list of words has sufficient originality to qualify for copyright protection. In addition to exploring the legal issue of whether a Scrabble word list can be copyrighted, the article also provides a fascinating glimpse into the world of competitive Scrabble playing. Read the full article here.
Reposted from Slate.