Why All Authors Should Care about #CockyGate

Why All Authors Should Care about #CockyGate

The situation deserves the urgent attention of anyone who works with the titling and branding of anything creative. It’s implications are huge and extend far outside one genre of fiction.

So what is #CockyGate?

Faleena Hopkins is an author who writes a series where all the books start with the word Cocky. She LLC registered trademarks to the word "Cocky" being used, and sent cease and desist notices to basically anyone with a book that has "Cocky" in the title, including people who had published their books before her own were published.

This thread on Twitter gives a good recap of everything happening with #CockyGate:

Here's an example of one of the letters the author sent out:

Legals have been joining the discussion. This article gives some good information about what is happening, and what you should do if you receive a similar notice regarding your own titles: http://legalinspiration.com/?p=503

Then there's the question of the font. She stated that she had trademarked the word "Cocky" in the font used on her books, but the creator of the font confirmed that it is not possible to do so.

Some (make that a LOT of) authors are preparing legal cases to fight back

As there is discussion about how legitimate the trademark actually is many are calling for Faleena Hopkins to be suspended until the case is resolved.

Readers are involved in the conversation too and giving some important insight that authors should not ignore.

Some are raising some important questions that should make all writers think very carefully about what they use in their works.

Numerous readers are not happy with the author, and are showing it by removing reviews they previous posted for her books.
If you visit the authors Amazon page you'll find that there are in fact a growing number of negative reviews being posted on all her titles.

There are also a lot of people sharing examples of authors who acted differently in a similar situation and those authors are now winning the internet.

Amazon and other book sellers will also have to be careful in how they handle the fall out of the whole situation.

UPDATE- RWA: Romance Writers of America (the trade association for romance writers) has tweeted Amazon's response to their requests:

Here's what the author had to say in reply to the reaction: UPDATE- The author removed her video from Facebook but I have since found a copy of it uploaded to YouTube:

It's still early days, and there is a lot to be resolved, but the whole situation will definitely have a huge impact of the publishing industry.

UPDATE- There has been another similar trademark request filed for "Rebellion" (by a different author).



  1. I have read some of that series, it is entertaining and enjoyable enough but it was never going to gain the level of recognition on it's own that it has because of Faleena Hopkins ridiculous actions.

    1. I've not read the authors books and hadn't heard of her until this blew up.

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