No-go kart

31 January 2020

A Japanese court fined the Japanese karting company Mari Mobility for the sum of €416,000 for infringing Nintendo’s copyrights. The karting company offered “Mario Kart racing” in Tokyo.

Customers could rent costumes and dress up like Mario, Luigi or Yoshi. That way, they could ride around Japan’s capital as their favourite Mario Kart character in a go-kart.

In 2017, Nintendo sued Mari Mobility, then known as Marikart, for copyright infringement (earlier post here). The judge then fined the company for the sum of approximately €83,000. Mari Mobility appealed, but in vain. The fine now imposed on Mari Mobility is over five times higher than the previous fine.

Nintendo writes on their website that they will continue to take action against companies that violate Nintendo’s copyrights, “to protect what has been built up with great effort and over many years”.

Mari Mobility has chosen a different path. The company’s website now shows that customers can race the streets of Tokyo dressed up as superheroes.

Hmm… perhaps Marvel will be next in line to sue them.


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