Friday, February 12, 2016

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office rules Washington Redskins name offensive

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Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder. (Nick Wass/AP)
Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder. (Nick Wass/AP)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. Patent Office has ruled the Washington Redskins nickname is "disparaging of Native Americans" and that the team's federal trademarks for the name must be canceled.

The ruling announced Wednesday comes after a campaign to change the name has gained momentum over the past year.

The decision by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board is similar to one it issued in 1999. That ruling was overturned in 2003 in large part on a technicality because the courts decided that the plaintiffs were too old.

The new case was launched in 2006 by a younger group of Native Americans. A hearing was held in March 2013.

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Just like last time, the Redskins can retain their trademark protection during an appeal.

The Associated Press
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