U.S. Patent Office Cancels Washington Redskins Trademark

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press
The U.S. Patent Office has ruled the Washington Redskins trademark must be canceled, calling it "disparaging of Native Americans".

United States Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid talks about the history of racism behind the NFL's Washington Redskins mascot. Photo Source: CNN

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 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.

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

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