Source – When Mark Morris and Chris Delay of Introversion Software began working on Prison Architect, they knew it was a game that would stir controversy. They never expected, however, that a simulator about the incarceration of cute, blobby humans had the potential to make them criminals themselves. Their crime? Displaying a tiny, five-pixel wide red cross on the hood of the ambulances and backpacks of paramedics. It might sound laughable, but it just so happens that those five pixels arranged just so are an internationally protected symbol.
Days before Christmas, Delay and Morris received a concerning email from the British Red Cross.
“My immediate reason for writing is that it has been brought to our attention that in your game ‘Prison Architect’ a red cross emblem is displayed on vehicles,” it reads. “Those responsible may be unaware that use of the red cross emblem is restricted under the Geneva Conventions for the Protection of War Victims of 12 August 1949, and that unauthorised use of this sign in the United Kingdom is an offence under the Geneva Conventions Act 1957.”
Well this is a weird twist. For those who don’t like reading, the Red Cross actually has a trademark on the red cross you see in lots of places. They don’t necessarily use that trademark as much as they should. My reaction would be the same as the developers. They legit thought this was a prank. I can’t get it out of my head that it was like this scene from the Other Guys. But honest to god this is something that the Red Cross can pull on people if they feel like it. I don’t quite get why they can still have a trademark if they don’t really protect it, but that is for the crack legal department of Glorious Upgrades™.
The even weirder part of this story is the implications this brings. I guess the Red Cross can pull their weight around and demand that cross be taken out. Even scarier (for developers not really us) is that they could pull some shady black mail shit on video games. Think how many places you see that little red cross around? All over this mothertrucker. As we know, the Red Cross isn’t exactly a bunch of angels. Google it. They actually don’t really give a shit. What I’m saying is, watch out next time you post a red cross. You might get you shit knocked.