Lord of the Rings themed cryptocurrency JRR Token was immediately under fire as soon as it was announced. Not only did the idea of a resource-hungry e-currency go against LOTR creator J.R.R Tolkien's environmentalist views, but it's announcement made thousands of fans uncomfortable.
For its announcement, JRR Token hired a cameo video from actor Billy Boyd. The actor is beloved for his portrayal of the hyperactive hobbit Peregrin "Pippin" Took. However, his involvement in helping to launch the cryptocurrency — even if he seemingly had no idea what it was — drew the ire of fans.
The Tolkien estate has killed JRR Token cryptocurrency
Reported by Ars Technica, the estate of J.R.R. Tolkien has noticed the buzz around the Lord of the Rings cryptocurrency. The Tolkien estate took notice of the cryptocurrency’s heavy use of LOTR mythology and symbolism during is its marketing.
For example, the cryptocurrency was given the slogan: “The One Token That Rules Them All.” Additionally, the token’s website featured heavy use of Tolkien iconography including rings and hobbit holes.
The Tolkien estate filed a complaint with the World Intellectual Property Organization to take down the infringing item. Lawyers on the side of the currency’s developer argued that the crypto campaign didn't infringe on the iconic IP.
However, it was swiftly determined that JRR Token’s developer was “aware of Tolkien’s works and created a website to trade off the fame of these works.” A solicitor on the side of the Tolkein estate said afterwards that the case was a “particularly flagrant case of infringement”.
What's next for Lord of the Rings?
The Lord of the Rings franchise is currently going through a renaissance. With The Hobbit trilogy over, the franchise is heading in a slightly different direction. Instead of a new series of movies, the franchise is moving into television.
Partnering with Amazon, the upcoming TV show will focus on an earlier period in the series’ history. Set almost 3,500 years before The Fellowship of the Ring, in the Age of Númenor, the show will explore some intriguing aspects of Middle Earth.