J.K. Rowling's Pottermore website trademarked as a 'global computer information network'


The Internet is all aflutter with speculation as to what the mysterious new Harry Potter-related website Pottermore, recently launched by J.K. Rowling, is all about. Other than the promise of an announcement in T-minus five days, there hasn’t been much official word, giving Potterphiles everywhere license to ponder the possibilities. So far, the idea gaining the most traction is that Pottermore stands for “Potter Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Experience,” a MMORPG set in the world of wizarding and magic we’ve grown to love. Which, I’m sure we can all agree, would be such a large amount of awesomeness it wouldn’t even fit in Hermione’s handbag.

The good news is that the language of the trademark registered by Warner Bros. doesn’t necessarily dispel the possibility of such a game. Filed nearly a full two years ago, the application outlines Pottermore as a service “providing multiple-user access to a global computer information network, […] on-line chat rooms and electronic bulletin boards for transmission of messages among users in the field of general interest [and] on-line facilities for real-time interaction with other computer users concerning topics of general interest.” Judging from that description, I’m still tempted to say it will end up being an expansive website, with possibly some game elements, as opposed to a full-on World of Witchcraft. But I may be wrong.

In subsequent filings, Warner Bros. also trademarked anything else that could possibly ever be linked to Pottermore, including greeting cards, erasers, and swimming floats, but that’s just the general due diligence. What do you think this trademark means, Shelf-Lifers? Would you be psyched if it turned out to be a role-playing game?

Comments (96 total) Add your comment
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  • alicia

    I would love to see a full-on Harry Potter themed MMORPG. The possibilities would be endless! I am going to hope for that.

    • Melinda

      This EW writer is a pedo. He’s all wound up about this site.

      • TheIntersect

        I don’t think you know what that word means. Please go back to school and learn it.

    • kendra

      what the heck doess mmorpg mean!?

      • Daniel

        Massively multiplayer online role playing game. World of Warcraft is an example of MMORPG.

    • Liz Lemon

      I love how everyday you visit the youtube site for Pottermore, there’s more owls. SO COOL!

      • Fouzia

        i’ve read harry potter and the dealthy hallows 5 time and i can never get bored of it. i love daniel emma rupert evanna bonnie and katie they are all the best ever!! its so sad that j.k isn’t writing any more books!! i’m going to miss harry potter so much i love him

  • Matt W.

    Meh, I don’t play MMORPG games so this is going to be a let down for me.

    I wanted more Potterverse books.

    • AcaseofGeo

      Yeah me neither, that would leave me disappointed too.

    • Jerry

      I totally agree. I’d rather have another book than some convoluted game in a genre I don’t even play.

  • courtney

    I’m still holding out hope for more books… maybe the stories of the next gen of Hogwarts students?

    • Captain

      They’ve already said its NOT books.

      • Christian R

        They already said it’s not books? :/ Cause even if it was about the next gen of students, I wouldn’t doubt that JKR would make it absolutely brilliant.

      • Matt W.

        Unfortunetly, in the first EW press release they confirmed it wont be books. :-(

      • FoxHound

        JKR did say in the Oprah interview that she wouldn’t be opposed to writing up to another three books eventually. And yeah, this probably isn’t that. BUT WE CAN DREAM CAN’T WE????

      • Dash

        They have said that this is not books. I am thinking it’s going to be like Facebook for Potter fans. A place to network and let your true Potter nerdism fly.

      • Fris

        I want more Perverse books.

    • Bob

      Safer bet, when it eventually comes time for more books, is that she’ll write the prequels that lead up to Sorcerer’s (Philosopher’s) Stone. She already has the built-in history for those books.

    • grapien

      i’d be excited for more books-prequel would be awesome

  • wowed

    I don’t play MMORPGs, but I would absolutely start, if this turns out to be a Potter-themed MMORPG. That would be epic.

    • Lauren

      Ditto. I don’t play- but if this was a full on call of duty kind of thing, I would love it.

      I wasn’t thrilled with the epilogue, so I don’t care to read future gen books.

      Whatever it is, I hope it’s not just a lame website. WB has hyped it too much.

    • Ally


    • Lani

      I once played Wizard 101 (cuz I was HP deprived) and up to a certain point it was free, then you had to pay for all the really cool fun stuff…so if it is a RPG I hope it’s free!

  • Liz Lemon

    Those are not clues. Whenever a trademark is filed, they basically cover everything to avoid copycats.

    I guess it could be an online Hogwarts with JK Rowling as Headmaster or something, but that’s too cheesy for JKR.

    • MikeNJD

      As a trademark lawyer, yes, you are right, that we do try to cover all bases when filing TM applications, but the very specific description of the computer system seems to indicate the site’s true use.

  • Lily

    There is a documentary about JK Rowling in the Half-Blood Prince DVD — and in a segment when she was writing out the family histories of the Potters, Weasleys and Malfoys, she stopped on Harry and Ginny’s son, Albus Severus, and said, “He interests me………” I’ve thought, from that moment, that JK Rowling might be tempted to write a second generation Potter saga. Fingers crossed!!

  • Shay

    I don’t care what it is. If its JK and Potter related I will most likely throw money at it.

    • stephanie

      Yep. Ditto.

      • fan or geek?

        yep, that pretty much says it for me, too!

    • alicia

      hahah yes same here

  • Roekest

    If this isn’t a MMORPG (which would be pretty awesome), it’s going to be a reference website along the lines of the Harry Potter Lexicon, which Rowling and her publisher had issues with several years ago. My guess.

    • Kate

      Yeah, that’s what it is. I always thought Rowling’s objection to Harry Potter Lexicon was strange . . . she supported the site until its creator proposed a book, which would have made him some money. That never made sense — but now it does. She wants her own for-profit website and her own book (which we know she’s been writing for years). So that’s what it is — sort of Facebook for Potterites.

      • Ciara

        It wasn’t that it was the amount of the book that came straight from her books was the problem I think… Copyright and all that

  • Michelle

    If it’s a MMORPG, I’m going to be highly disappointed. I don’t play and have no intention of playing. I’m waiting for the day Jo finishes the Scottish Book!

  • Lucas

    Under the latest trademark filing for J K ROWLING there is “IC 045. US 100 101. G & S: Internet based social networking services featuring the creation of personal profiles that feature social networking information.”

  • karen

    I didn’t even know what “MMORPG” stood for until I had to google it, so if that’s what it is obviously it won’t really rock my world. I will never get my hopes up for more books – if I convince myself it won’t happen, I’ll be pleasantly shocked when it does. But really, I’m happy with 7 brilliant ones.

  • Matt W.

    See I don’t even want more books about Harry Potter. I would like some “origin” type stories for like Minerva growing up, or Harry’s parents in the time between School and their death, etc etc. I want some things to flesh out the Potter Universe. Imagine a great story from Rowling on the birth of Aurors or The first Headmaster of Hogwarts.

    • Ian

      The 7 years at school for the Marauders would probably be the first place she’d go if she ever decides to write any more books in the Potter universe. Her sort-of “prequel” that she did for charity was just that, an 800 word quickie about James & Sirius, though it took place 3 years before Harry’s birth, so not set in their school years.

      • Sarah

        Oh my freaking God I would totally read 7 books about the Marauders. I bet that s*** would be awesome.

      • Dash

        I would like to know more about Snape. I don’t know what my feelings toward him are. I feel like I hated him for 6 and 7/8 of a book and then suddenly I’m supposed to see him as some kind of hero? I would like some books that flushed out his character.

  • Michael Spink

    I’m betting it’s the Harry Potter Encyclopedia JKR talked about producing after Deathly Hallows was released. Perhaps fleshing out some lesser character backstory, plants & animals in the wizarding world, Wizarding History ect.
    I bet JKR has another book worth of stuff that she couldn’t fit into the books, so as a thank you to fans for making her a billionaire she’s perhaps releasing it for free, with some stuff hidden behind puzzles that perhaps require groups of people to solve, hence the chat rooms…

    • Kate

      Not likely a “thank you to fans for making her a billionaire” — she wants to double her earnings, not send thank-you cards! It will be a Potterverse social networking site which could bring in billions on its own (a la Facebook).

      • Dave

        It is wonderfully hilarious to read posts like this where people presume to know what anyone, let alone Rowling is thinking. Yes she created something that has made her money, but the Harry Potter phenomenon has also reinvigorated reading amongst kids and adults alike.

  • Paul Reiser

    Maybe in the game you could play a wizard, just a normal guy with 2 kids, a bunch of wacky friends, just doing the best that he can. You know, I mean, I think America would like to see that.

    • Ally

      I would! They should make a sitcom! XD

      Actually, what I would love to see (that has nothing to do with this site) is an Aurors-centric TV show. Some YouTube group made an April Fool’s day prank trailer for just such a show, and it was one of those things that I never even knew I wanted until I saw it and wondered how I’d survived so long without it. I just wish it was real. :(

    • tina

      I admire your persistence at getting this … joke? meme? whatever … to catch on. But it is about as funny as the Paul Reiser Show

    • Liv

      Isn’t that the whole point of Second Life? You should look into that friend.

  • Sarah Thomas

    Wow…I can’t wait! I wonder what it is?

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