from the told-you dept
It was way back in the early part of 2016 that the rumors came out that the Oakland Raiders football team would be moving to a new home city. Fans were understandably upset and voiced their displeasure in a variety of ways, but the dumbest of those ways certainly must have been Lane Blue’s attempt to trademark the team name in conjunction with all of the different potential landing cities the team was rumored to be moving to, including the “Las Vegas Raiders.” Lane wasn’t the only sad Raiders fan to attempt this, it seems, as we now see reporting on his and other trademark applications being denied for obvious reasons.
Lane Blue, an air-freight company owner from Fresno, Calif., said that he applied for the trademark in an effort to stop the Raiders from relocating to Las Vegas.
“If I own the trademark that’s worth possibly millions of dollars, maybe I can talk them into staying,” Blue said, per KCBS.
Blue’s application was denied, as is likely with everyone else who applied for the trademark.
The reason for the denial is that trademarks must be used in commerce in order to be valid. Trolling your favorite NFL team in order to prevent it from moving cities is not, as best as I can tell, a form of commerce. Instead, it’s a form of being a mere annoyance to both that team and the Trademark Office. These squatting attempts, motivated either by fandom or attempts at a quick cash-grab, almost never work.
“These people think they’re going to cash in, and 99.9 percent of the time, they’re wrong,” sports-trademark attorney Patrick Jennings said, per KCBS. “For a trademark lawyer, it doesn’t take much effort to knock those (applications) out separate from the patent and trademark office.”
The only effect these applications are likely to have on the Raiders is a delay on them receiving the trademark. That could still be damaging, though, as knock-off “Las Vegas Raiders” gear is already flooding the marketplace.
And that’s supremely unfair for the Raiders ownership to have to spend the time and capital slapping these applications down. Meanwhile, of course, the Trademark Office is collecting the application fees from members of the public who somehow think a trademark application will bend an NFL team to its knees. Sorry, Raiders fans and get-rich-quick people, it isn’t going to work.