Beckett Media, HQ'd off Welch Road and LBJ Freeway, publishes monthly price guides for damned near everything you can buy, sell, trade and collect -- from sports cards to Beanie Babies. And though business ain't what it used to be -- myriad titles have been dropped over the years as baseball card prices, among other valuations, took a steep tumble -- it's still a big business, especially as Beckett's gotten into the secondhand market on its Marketplace site.
Which is where Nintento subsidiary Pokémon Company International comes in: At the end of last week in Dallas federal court, the Bellevue, Washington-based company filed suit against Beckett claiming that for years it's been violating Pokémon's copyright by publishing those monthly price guides, which contain reproductions of hundreds of cards. Pokémon says it's been back-and-forthing with Beckett for years over the price guide to no avail. It filed suit because, well, the online outpost is the last straw since it "receives a commission, calculated as a percent of the sale price, from each sale transacted through the Beckett Marketplace."
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A message has been left for Beckett PR, but it's clear from the pleadings that the suit's really over the magazines. Which, I notice, you can no longer buy online from Beckett's virtual newsstand. Says issues new and old are "not found."