August 29, 2020
Being led by the Reserve Bank of Australia, Australian banks’ confederation has reportedly carried out legal action against Ripple Labs for copyright infringement.
The case pertains to PayID, a payment network managed by Open Payments Coalition (OPC). This alliance consists of over 40 global establishments such as GoPay, Ripple, Blockchain.com, Bitcpay, Brave, Flutterwave, and other companies.
The PayID service is alleged to be similar in concept and branding to New Payments Platform Australia’s (NNPA) own PayID service.
Parallel to Ripple’s offering, this service enables instant payments using a phone or email in a place of a bank account. This concept is deliberated to abridge payments through its more comfortable use to recall identifiers.
NPPA said it’s PayID service was launched over two years ago in a court statement, taking note that it was well established already.
Furthermore, the company claims that brand confusion could potentially facilitate criminal activity. They cited examples of money laundering, terrorism financing, and human rights abuse.
To add more to this, they also sustain Australian customers and businesses with better securities under their PayID service.
For Ripple using the PayID brand, the NPPA seeks a permanent injunction against them and damages.
Ripple, in response, offered to block Australian IPs from retrieving its PayID service, and as of now, the case is still on-going.
Is this a deliberate attempt to Confuse or a Careless Oversight from Ripple?
Though Ripple is no stranger to legal action, the turn of events in Australian increases severe demands about how the company is handling projects.
For instance, NPPA’s PayID service is extensively recognized. According to the court statements, NPPA has over five million listed users, representing a fifth of its population.
A Reddit user shared his feelings by saying it’s hard to believe that Ripple was uninformed. The PayID name was taken in Australian.
“This concerns me a little as an XRP holder. At best, it was incredibly clumsy of Ripple not to ensure that they didn’t use a brand name already associated with a similar product. At worst, it feels like a deliberate attempt to create market confusion in Australia.”
Other citizens have defended Ripple stating NPPA’s claim on the PayID name that had lapsed. Also, Australia has still to give NPPA trademark rights.
Whereas, June this year saw the US patents office accept two filings for the PayID trademark from Ripple.
Along with the relevance of “first use” and consideration of trademark expiry, it points out that this isn’t as straightforward as copyright infringement.