Nintendo files trademark on 'NSW' abbreviation

It would seem Nintendo is trying to officially lay legal claim to a shorthand term for the Switch.

Image via Nintendo

Nintendo has begun to move on an interesting trademark as of recent, and it’s not on technology or a new product, but rather a longrunning shorthand abbreviation for the Nintendo Switch: NSW. The company has officially filed for this trademark with European authorities at this time, seeking legal control over the term “NSW” and its use.

Nintendo’s trademark on NSW was spotted by users on ResetEra, with an official filing available on the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) website. With the filing, Nintendo has moved to gain control of the NSW abbreviation and its official use for commercial purposes. It’s worth noting that Nintendo already has a copyright trademark over the term “Nintendo Switch” and the abbreviation codename for Nintendo Switch hardware is not “NSW,” but rather “HAC.” With this in mind, it comes across as rather curious for many that Nintendo is specifically moving to target the abbreviation as a further legally-controlled term. It may be possible that given NSW’s nature as a commonly used Switch abbreviation, Nintendo is looking to stifle unauthorized products that attempt to utilize the term to try to dodge copyright issues.

According to the trademark filed in Europe, Nintendo is laying legal claim to the abbreviation, "NSW."
According to the trademark filed in Europe, Nintendo is laying legal claim to the abbreviation, "NSW."

Nintendo has been on quite the move this season. Where it was quiet for a long time about the possibility of summer showcases in games, we eventually finally got two Direct showcases, one featuring Xenoblade Chronicles 3 and the other featuring third-party games releasing on the Switch such as the Persona series. Nonetheless, Nintendo’s legal department is always as active as it is on the development front. It seems unlikely that NSW would be the abbreviation for a new product from the company, but it’s also worth noting that Nintendo abbreviations like HAC are often early decisions and usually always quite different from the final name.

Is NSW the sign of something new for Nintendo or simply an effort to maintain legal control over things commonly associated with the company? We’ll keep an eye on this story for further updates as they become available.

Senior News Editor

TJ Denzer is a player and writer with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime. He found his way to the Shacknews roster in late 2019 and has worked his way to Senior News Editor since. Between news coverage, he also aides notably in livestream projects like the indie game-focused Indie-licious, the Shacknews Stimulus Games, and the Shacknews Dump. You can reach him at and also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

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