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Someone at the patent / trademark office is either retiring and doesn't give a fuck, or they're a prankster that wants to see this whole system burn.

"Ohio State gets approval to trademark 'The' for merchandise"

"The ™️"

npr.org/2022/06/22/1106875118/

@craigmaloney I think this is a good reflection of trademark law. "The" has long been associated with this particular OSU.

It is unclear what it gets them though, other than a few articles about the trademark. They already would have had a common law mark. Seems like a waste of tax payer money since no one else was going to be selling red shirts and hats with the word "The" on them. Nothing was stopping them from doing that already.

@craigmaloney to 100% clear, this is 100% dumb. However, the PTO is not the dumb entity involved.

@craigmaloney occurred to me that the NCAA might require a federal trademark for officially licensed merchandise, so they might be the real villain here. The whole thing is dumb enough though that I'm not going to waste any more brain power on it. :)

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