Ohio State University Successfully Files ‘THE’ Trademark for Sportswear

The Ohio State University has successfully trademarked “THE” in certain uses and for certain types of apparel, according to filings with the USPatent and Trademark Office. File photo by Art Foxall/UPI | License picture

June 22 (UPI) — The Ohio State University has successfully registered “THE” in certain uses and for certain trademarks, according to filings with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

The public land grant research university of Columbus received the mark this week for use on “apparel, namely t-shirts, baseball caps and hats; all of the above being promoted, distributed and sold through the usual channels in the field of sports and collegiate athletics,” according to the trademark office.

He has long used “THE” as part of the branding of his NCAA sports teams, the Buckeyes.

The Certificate of Registration allows the State of Ohio to control the use of “THE” displayed on covered merchandise.

The school first applied for the mark in August 2019, but it was denied.

Ohio State had also been in a dispute with clothing brand Marc Jacobs over the use of the word. The two parties then reached an agreement.

Ohio State said it used “THE” on T-shirts and hats dating back to 2005, giving it a legitimate trademark claim.

“This is a defensive action in response to designer Marc Jacobs’ response to the office’s action in his application, which includes an example of its intended use that signals a potential encroachment on the established use of ‘The “by Ohio State,” a university spokesperson. Ben Johnson told The Lantern in 2020.

The mark is valid for 10 years, but can be renewed.


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