AutobotMR2 wrote:All I'm saying is legally speaking 3rd parties are safe from lawsuits...most of them anyway. Because yes it looks like devestator, but once agian, Hasbro does not own the right to color coordination, look at the Wal-Mart exclusive "devestator" released a few years ago....it couldn't even be called Devestator BY HASBRO. They had to alter his name. And I do agree with you that if dealer's DO bring 3rd party items to botcon, they should be taken away...because they have violated their agreement with Hasbro for their table. But back to Hasbro actually taking action agianst some 3rd party companies...unless they do claim that this character IS INDEED this character...and it is a carbon copy of a patent made by Hasbro or Takara....Hasbro will be in litigation with that for a long while...it would be too long a fight for them to invest in with not enough to gain from it.
The thing is though that it's not just going to be about Toy designs. When you look at TFs from a toy company marketing perspective, what you find is that there's a crossover as to what the character is. The cartoon and the comic were of course made to sell the toys, but at the same time, the cartoon and comic are products in and of themselves.
So what you wind up with is Devastator as an IP for the comic, the cartoon and the toy and so if a 3rd party toy copies the cartoon likeness for example, it could be argued that even though the toy looks different, the likeness for the character which the toy is based on (meaning that the character is already being marketed by the owners as a toy) has been plageurised.
In some cases, it might be more vague (eg Battle Trailer), but in cases like the new Minibots and Hercules, it's pretty open and shut.
Hopefully once the dust is settled (I get the feeling that this stage is alot of posturing by Hasbro before taking action against the worst examples of ripping off their IPs), these companies resolve the issue with licensing deals which make the 3rd party stuff out there completely legit. But for now, it's a case of these companies going about things in the wrong way, and Hasbro defending their rights and properties- completely justifiably too I might add.