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Zynga sued over Oregon Trail game

Publisher demands stop to imminent Frontierville update

Social games giant Zynga is being sued by educational publisher Houghton Mifflin Harcourt over the use of the name Oregon Trail.

The suit alleges that a division of HMH, The Learning Co, approached Zynga about making a Facebook version of its 80s game Oregon Trail in 2008, but the company eventually teamed with Blue Fang Games and launched the title earlier this year.

But this hasn't stopped Zynga from developing Frontierville's Oregon Trail, due for release at the end of the week.

However, The Learning Co claims a trademark for the name Oregon Trail as it relates to games, and is demanding Zynga stops using the name and pays damages - although no amount is named in the court documents.

According to the Boston Business Journal the court documents state that "Zynga has a reputation in the gaming industry as a developer that disregards others' intellectual property rights", and cites previous articles from SF Weekly and Business Insider from 2010.

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Matt Martin

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Matt Martin joined GamesIndustry in 2006 and was made editor of the site in 2008. With over ten years experience in journalism, he has written for multiple trade, consumer, contract and business-to-business publications in the games, retail and technology sectors.

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