Originally posted on Football Nation  |  Last updated 3/10/13
On Thursday March 7, 2013, the Redskins general manager Bruce Allen attended a hearing before three judges of the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board about whether the team name should be deemed a racial slur. A Native American Activist Group provided their case to prove to the board panel at the U.S. Patent Office that the team name was offensive to American Indians and is a slur that should not be trademarked. The U.S. Patent Office last granted the Redskins trademark rights back in 2003. The decision made by the U.S. Patent Office board will not be released for another few months.Overall, if this activist group wins the trial against Dan Snyder and the Redskins, the Redskins will not be allowed to trademark their team name. The impact of this does not necessarily result in a mandated name change. It does however have broad reaching impact on the marketing rights. Basically, if the activist group wins this Patent Trial, anyone can sell and recreate Redskins paraphernalia with no risk of copyright infringement. The Redskins would no longer have a monopolistic cash cow strong hold on their fans.In addition to the Patent Trial, the Native American Activist Group has set up an online petition that stems from a symposium earlier in 2012 at the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of the American Indian. So, you know those guys that sell fake or knock off Redskins hats and shirts outside the stadium and on the internet? Well, competition could run amuck with nothing to stop them. This could finally mean a buyers’ market for Redskins fans- another group who is no stranger to disenfranchisement. 
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