Allegations Of Fraud Raised In Comicsgate Trademark Battle
Earlier this year, we reported on Comicsgate creator and critic Preston Poulter and his attempt to trademark the term 'Comicsgate'. The registration was made by Common Sense Press Inc DBA Pocket Jacks Comics, of Dallas, Texas. Poulter is the writer and creator who self-publishes comics such as White Lily under the name Pocket Jacks Comics, and creates YouTube videos commonly covering 'Last Week in Comicsgate'. His comics have now been picked up by Red 5 Comics for publication later this year.
Poulter declared he was going to start enforcing the Comicsgate trademark, deciding who could or could not use the Comicsgate term in publishing or promoting that work. This put him up in direct opposition to the likes of Comicsgate figures Ethan Van Sciver, WarCampaign, and the like. Subsequently, some extremely graphic adult videos of Poulter were discovered online and spread on social media, apparently by those who didn't appreciate his criticism or plans for the trademark.
We also reported that as a result of Poulter's actions, an earlier, abandoned trademark application for the phrase "Comics Gate" by Antonio J Malpica of Florida comics publisher Scorn Comics, was revived. During that process, Poulter found his own application was suspended.
There has been a development since, according to officially filed documents, Poulter is trying to get Malpica's registration cancelled, claiming that Poulter will be "damaged by the continued registration of the Comics Gate mark", also stating that Malpica is not using the mark, that it has been abandoned, but is being used against Poulter's own trademark. And as a result Poulter is unable to federally register and protect its his trademarks. Poulter also alleges fraud, stating that Malpica signed a declaration that the Comics Gate mark "was in use in commerce on or in connection with all of the goods/services listed in the application". Poulter's case states that these declarations were false, that the Comics Gate trademark had not been used in commerce before it was filed, and that supplementary documents did not provide evidence otherwise.
The trial dates are set to run through 2021 and into 2022.