Telegram drops Gram trademark
Alt coins

In a coda to its failed TON blockchain project, Telegram abandons trademark suit

Telegram paid one last time—to a competitor—for the death of its plan to distribute $1.7 billion in Gram tokens at the hands of the SEC

Telegram withdrew its lawsuit over its exclusive rights to the name Gram—the tokens on its failed Telegram Open Network (TON) blockchain project—against a cryptocurrency firm that wanted to use it.

According to a Bloomberg Law report published on August 25, the messaging service turned blockchain developer dismissed its lawsuit against crypto firm Lantah, which plans to use Grams as the name of its own tokens. The decision came after Telegram abandoned the project that would use the trademark following its settlement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Before voluntarily dismissing its lawsuit, Telegram obtained a preliminary injunction that barred the crypto firm from using Gram as a name for its tokens. Lantah’s attorneys said that the firm behind the popular messenger should pay the legal costs of the lawsuit, while Telegram’s lawyers insisted that this was not the case.

While Telegram lawyers claimed that most of Lantah’s legal costs were caused by its own litigation strategy which they say was “excessive and avoidable”—and thus should be paid by the Lantah itself—the court decided that the messenger indeed has to foot the bill.

As Modern Consensus reported at the end of June, the SEC agreed with Telegram to settle its action against the firm if the company returned then remaining $1.2 billion of funding to investors and an $18.5 million penalty. This is about 70% of the $1.7 billion raised.

In May, Telegram CEO Pavel Durov announced that the company would stop all of its involvement in the development of the TON blockchain. In the post, he heavily criticized the U.S. judge whose verdict put an end to the project by blocking it internationally and the American regulations that enabled him to do it.

Still, the firm did not shut down the TON testnet until this month. In an announcement published at the beginning of July, the developers behind the blockchain project wrote:

“Our remaining validators will be switched off not later than [Aug. 1], 2020. Please save all relevant data and terminate your testing process.”

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Adrian is a newswriter based out of Pisa, Italy. He's passionate about cryptocurrency, digital rights, IT, tech and futurology and likes to think about the future in a positive way.