"It is a law called the Lanham Act that gives the federal government the power to refuse to register or to cancel trademarks deemed scandalous, immoral or disparaging — let’s call it SIOD for short. On the basis of that law, the United States Patent and Trademark Office, for example, determined that Redskins, as in Washington Redskins, was SIOD and canceled its trademark... The primary purpose of the 1905 Trade Mark Act, later reenacted as the Lanham Act in 1946, is twofold, as Carpenter and Murphy wrote in their law review article, “including lessening of consumer search costs and encouraging producers of goods and services ‘to invest in quality by ensuring that they, and not their competitors, reap the reputation-related rewards of that investment,’ thereby protecting consumers from deceptive practices.”... What is SIOD? “It is always going to be just a matter of the personal opinion of the individual parties as to whether they think it is disparaging,” said the PTO’s assistant commissioner in 1939, as he explained his own discomfort."
Sunday, October 2, 2016
Warning: This article on trademarks may include language deemed ‘scandalous, immoral or disparaging’; Washington Post, 9/30/16
Fred Barbash, Washington Post; Warning: This article on trademarks may include language deemed ‘scandalous, immoral or disparaging’ :