Kobe Bryant’s fans may one day be able to see him once more—in the metaverse
Kobe Bryant’s estate filed three trademark applications with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Jan. 28 for “Kobe Bryant,” “Mamba Forever,” and “Mambacita” (in reference to Bryant’s late daughter Gianna). For “use in virtual experiences and the metaverse,” Bryant and his daughter’s respective trademarks cover “virtual and digital interactive representations” of both of them, as well as “virtual and digital goods,” such as art and avatars for video games and trading cards.
Two years have passed since the Calabasas helicopter crash that claimed the lives of Bryant, his daughter and seven others in January 2020. Last month, a bronze statue of Kobe and Gianna Bryant was unveiled at the crash site in the memory of the Lakers legend and his daughter, a youth basketball player in her own right.
Kobe Bryant’s Legacy Will Live On
His widow Vanessa has trademarked footwear, apparel, and wine under the Kobe Inc. brand development firm he founded in 2013 to manage his business interests following his death in a motorcycle accident. Brands and businesses may soon be able to use the metaverse as a platform for expanding their reach in the virtual world.
There has been a flood of trademark filings from various companies and celebrities to protect their rights in the metaverse, trademark lawyer Josh Gerben told Bloomberg.
In December, Bryant’s former Lakers teammate and foe Shaquille O’Neal’s brand management firm Authentic Brands filed trademark applications covering Shaq’s name and likeness in the metaverse.