SCOTUS to decide if names some people don’t like can be trademarked

posted by
September 29, 2016
Los Angeles Times    
Posted in News

"The Supreme Court agreed Thursday to decide whether the Slants, an Asian American rock band from Portland, Ore., can trademark its name despite the government's objection that it is an offensive term. This clash between free speech and trademark protection has drawn wide attention in part because the Washington Redskins football team is locked in the same dispute. Simon Tam, the founder of the band, said his aim was to adopt a word that had been a slur directed at Asians in order to make fun of the term. But officials at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office were not in on the joke, and they rejected Tam's application for a protected trademark." [editor's note: Trademark is exactly the opposite of free speech -- it's a claim of ownership of a word and a demand that other people not use that word - TLK] (09/29/16)  

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