Earlier this year, I put together a series of blog posts on three sets of trademark applications directed to the marks “The,” “Tom Terrific” and “Taco Tuesday.” The three sets of trademark applications were rejected by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”). Since the deadline to respond to the rejections passed, I thought that it would be a good idea to report out what happened.
The Ohio State University submitted a response that included an extensive declaration from an assistant vice president of the university in an effort to show that the mark was not merely ornamental. The declaration indicated, inter alia, that the student body made it a practice to emphasize the word “the” when pronouncing the full name of the university. The declaration further described this practice as permanent part of the culture of the student body.
The USPTO accepted the argument, but suspended the application until another application for the mark “THE” by Marc Jacobs Trademarks, L.L.C. was either abandoned or registered. As indicated in my Feb. 20, 2020 blog, that application has priority over Ohio State University’s application.
Tom Brady abandoned the two trademark applications that were directed to the mark “TOM TERRIFIC” on Feb. 25, 2020. He did not respond to the outstanding Office Actions.
LeBron James abandoned the trademark application that was directed to the mark “TACO TUESDAY” on March 12, 2020. He did not respond to the outstanding Office Action.