Patent No Longer Pending
The strange saga of the team that dare not mention its name continues:
As USA Today noted before the ruling, the Redskins would still be allowed to use the mark "even if it loses on appeal." But since "federally registered trademarks keep others from selling items with the team's logos," the effect of the ruling "would be large" and dent the team's profits even if the Redskins "try to keep unauthorized merchandisers from using the marks through common law and state statues."Apparently the disparaged still have nothing better to do...
As the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board emphasized in the 2-1 ruling, federal law "prohibits registration of marks that may disparage persons or bring them into contempt or disrepute." The Board said it found the evidence "overwhelmingly supports a determination that" the team's name is "disparaging."
Administrative Trademark Judge Karen Kuhlke noted in the opinion that the respondent introduced "evidence that some in the Native American community do not find the term 'Redskin' disparaging when it is used in connection with professional football," but she said it ultimately "does not negate the opinions of those who find it disparaging."