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Entertainment and Sports Law Intellectual Property Litigation Trademarks

Limit in Supreme Court Striking Down Ban On ‘Scandalous’ Trademarks

In the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Iancu v. Brunetti, Justice Sonia Sotomayor’s dissent cautioned that the decision is likely to pave a path to a “coming rush to register [vulgar, profane, or obscene] trademarks.” The reasoning stems from the court’s majority finding that a portion of 15 U.S.C. §1052 — which had previously prohibited the registering of “immoral” or “scandalous” trademarks — is unconstitutional. Practically speaking, however, this “coming rush” will likely not be the case, even via the entertainment industry.

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In the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Iancu v. Brunetti, 139 S. Ct. 2294 (2017), Justice Sonia Sotomayor’s dissent cautioned that the decision is likely to pave a path to a “coming rush to register [vulgar, profane, or obscene] trademarks.” The reasoning stems from the court’s majority finding that a portion of 15 U.S.C. §1052 — which had previously prohibited the registering of “immoral” or “scandalous” trademarks — is unconstitutional.

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