International Quidditch Association says sport’s name will change to Quadball to cut trademark costs and distance itself from JK Rowling


The governing body for real-life Quidditch, the game inspired by the Harry Potter franchise, has officially announced that the sport will now be known as Quadball.

The International Quidditch Association (IQA) will help national governing bodies around the world change to the new name, which it says “refers to both the number of balls and the number of positions in the real-life sport”.

There are multiple reasons for the change — here’s what we know about it.

This has been a long time coming

The change from Quidditch to Quadball hasn’t come out of nowhere — this is just one of the final steps of the process.


The IQA’s Name Change Committee has been in action since March, when it formally recommended the switch in the sport’s official title.

Since then, the committee has worked with Quidditch stakeholders around the world to come up with a new one.

US Quidditch and Major League Quidditch had already rebranded as US Quadball (USQ) and Major League Quadball (MLQ), and the IQA says it’s following their lead.

“This is an important moment in our sport’s history, and I personally am thrilled to be a part of it,” IQA Board of Trustees chair Chris Lau said in a statement.

“I would also like to thank USQ and MLQ for working to make this happen.”


There are two key reasons for the change

The IQA has specifically called out Harry Potter author JK Rowling in its statement explaining the name change, citing that she has “increasingly come under scrutiny for her anti-trans positions”.

The sport is mixed and the IQA has an inclusivity clause, which “actively encourages participation by diverse people“:

“As a community, we want our sport to be inclusive of people of different ethnicities, cultural backgrounds, ages, languages, genders, sexual orientations. A key demonstration of this is the Gender Rule in quidditch, whereby players are able to play as the gender that they identify, as including non-binary genders.”

But that’s not the only reason.

“Quidditch” is a trademark owned by Warner Bros — which means anyone else who wants to use it has to pay for it.


The IQA says it wants to “grow like other sports that have sprung from humble origins”, and while it doesn’t specify the cost of using the Quidditch name, it’s likely not cheap.

“USQ and MLQ will own the trademark for ‘quadball’ in the United States and the IQA expects to enter into a license agreement to use the term,” the organisation’s statement says.

Quiddi— ah, Quadball, is a pretty big deal

The IQA says there are close to 600 registered teams spread across 40 countries, and that it will lead the charge in helping local organisations make the switch “on a worldwide basis”.

That’s expected to begin after this weekend’s final international tournament under the Quidditch brand — the IQA European Games 2022, held in Ireland — which features teams from all over Europe as well as Hong Kong and Australia.


“The IQA will work with its member national governing bodies on developing a timeline for adopting the new name following the European Games,” the group says.

Australia’s national Quidditch team, the Dropbears, arrived in Ireland this week to compete.

Quidditch Australia hasn’t yet confirmed its own name change plans.


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Anna C. Knight

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