At times, it seems as though Mike Stuchbery, the Left’s favorite “historian” unqualified to teach history to college freshmen, is subconsciously trying to expose the truth about himself, or perhaps he just does not bother to check Wikipedia before he spews his latest nonsense. In this case, Stuchbery called on Blizzard Entertainment to target Génération Identitaire for supposed copyright infringement. Naturally, as with virtually everything he does, this is laughable on multiple levels. For example, you do not copyright logos under most circumstances but rather trademark them, and even identical trademarks can coexist so long as what they represent are not related. Additionally, you cannot trademark a common symbol unless it has “acquired a distinctive secondary meaning… that identifies [it] with a particular good or service.”
Now, Blizzard almost certainly trademarked the symbol on the right, but Stuchbery appears to be oblivious to the fact that the symbol on the left is nothing more than the Greek lambda (Λ), which Génération Identitaire draws from the Spartans of ancient Greece. Beyond the actual inspiration, it could also be argued that the simple design is nothing more than a chevron. In either case, Blizzard Entertainment cannot claim that the symbol from their 2016 game Overwatch precludes others from ever using a lambda or chevron, especially when the alleged infringing party predates said video game by a few years.
That silliness aside, however, the bigger question is how did Mike Stuchbery, leftist historian par excellence, make such a goofy mistake? How did he not recognize the Spartan shield, which Génération Identitaire openly identifies as their logo? Anyone who has ever seen the movie 300 should have recognized it immediately, but, more than that, anyone who took even a second or two to research the group in question would have understood that A) they are older than Overwatch and B) the Spartan shield is much older and recognizable. So, again, how did Stuchbery fail here? As a supposed historian, he should have recognized it. As a person who had consumed pop culture in the last decade (movie) or two (comic), he should have recognized it. As someone who took even the most minimal of effort to look things up, he should have known better.
Some of his fans naturally tried to defend him by saying that he had obviously just been making a joke, but where exactly was the joke? That Génération Identitaire’s logo is vaguely similar to the one Blizzard used in an unrelated video game? Mind you, Stuchbery’s tweet had been preceded by another just before it, which said, “People keep asking how I feel & how I’ll deal with these ‘Generation Identity’ junior Nazis coming to Britain. Pity, unrelenting mockery.” So he signaled his intention to target the group and then compared their logo to a video game symbol? Was that the “unrelenting mockery”? That does not really hold water unless Stuchbery actually thought the group had stumbled into using a video game symbol. If, however, he recognized that they were using a Spartan shield and “joked” about vague similarities to an unrelated video game, honestly, why would anyone care? That would actually make him look childish.
We can also safely assume that he was not joking because the internet completely destroyed him in the responses, but he remained absolutely silent in return. There were no sarcastic rebuttals or telling his fans to report the “stupid Nazis,” both things he loves to do. He just moved on to other goofy topics—such as buying a video game— as though he had never discussed Génération Identitaire or their logo. Again, where is the “unrelenting mockery” that he had just promised? Why did he immediately drop the subject and move on? The answer seems obvious: namely, he had not been joking but rather gave the world a glimpse beyond the façade of “Mike Stuchbery, historian extraordinaire,” and what laid behind it was sad.