Yo, Seahawks. I know you're kind of Having A Moment right now, what with winning the Super Bowl last year and then becoming the first team in a decade to make it back to the Super Bowl the following year (by way of one of the wildest and most improbable comebacks in recent memory), but still. Let's pump the brakes on a few things, OK? I get that you're excited about your newfound success and that you want to #BuildYourBrand, but this? This is bullshit.
(via The Seattle Times)
Really? You want to trademark "Go Hawks," seriously?
Attempting to trademark 'Go Hawks' is ridiculous because it's a preposterous example of over-reaching to claim ownership of a generic phrase of support. It would be stupid for any team in any sport to try and trademark GO [insert team nickname]. Nearly every fanbase says GO [insert team nickname] to express support for their team. It seems even stupider to try and claim ownership of a phrase that uses a generic nickname like 'Hawks,' though. If you were the Seattle Whale Carcasses and you wanted to trademark GO WHALE CARCASSES... I mean, at least that would be novel. Pretty sure there aren't any other teams using WHALE CARCASSES as a nickname.
But Hawks? There are a lot of Hawks out there. There are the Atlanta Hawks. The St. Joseph's Hawks. The Monmouth University Hawks. Not to mention the multitude of teams -- like you, Seattle! -- that use Hawks as a shortened version of their full nickname, like the Chicago Blackhawks, the University of Kansas (Jayhawks), Lehigh University (Mountain Hawks), the University of Louisiana-Monroe and Wisconsin-Whitewater (Warhawks), Miami University (RedHawks), UNC Wilmington and Northwood University (Seahawks), Coe College (Kohawks), and two professional lacrosse teams (the Cheasapeake Bayhawks and the Rochester Knighthawks). And, yes, the University of Iowa (Hawkeyes).
Iowa is not a stranger to trademark litigation and #ProtectingTheBrand, as evidenced by the lawsuits and cease-and-desist orders that pop up when someone tries to use the tigerhawk or a mark similar to the tigerhawk. But there's a difference between protecting a distinctive image like the tigerhawk and trying to assert ownership over a generic phrase that your team shares with teams in several other sports teams. Step off, Seahawks.
H/T Brendan Stiles on the Twitters.