I’m Just Here For The Trademark: Lynch Files Claim Over Media Line

Marshawn_Lynch_Pro_Bowl_2013One of my colleagues sent me the latest example of people claiming common phrases or symbols as their own trademarked property. The latest trademark grab is by the normally taciturn Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch. We previously discussed how Lynch refused to speak at press conference until he was fine and then went and kept repeating “I’m just here so I won’t get fine.” You guessed it. He has claimed a trademark to the phrase.

The most recent claim follows a disturbing trend in copyright and trademark claims over things occurring in public or common phrases or terms. (For a prior column, click here). We have often discussed the abusive expansion of copyright and trademark laws. This includes common phrases, symbols, and images being claimed as private property. (here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here). This included a New York artist claiming that he holds the trademark to symbol π.

Lynch used the phrase as the answer to more than 20 questions on Super Bowl XLIX media day before walking off the podium. Previously, Lynch trademarked “About that action BOSS,” a statement he made Deion Sanders of the NFL Network in the only interview he conducted during Super Bowl XLVIII media day.

Lynch owns four “Beast Mode” trademarks. He has also filed for the phrase “Power Pellets.”

This feeding frenzy will continue until Congress stands up for ordinary citizens and curtails the ever-expanding claims over basic language and symbols. These laws are now having the opposite effect of their intended purpose. They are inhibiting creativity rather than fostering it.

Source: ESPN

Kudos: Professor Roger Schechter

20 thoughts on “I’m Just Here For The Trademark: Lynch Files Claim Over Media Line”

  1. And when I get my trademark of the word “the” you’ll all owe me, big time.

    1. Max-1 – I am going to force you into magistrates’ court here in Arizona where you have to represent yourself. I will do that for each use of the word. 😉 You will no longer have a life.

  2. Marshawn Lynch is an awesome running back. And he has not killed any ex wives, their boyfriends or dogs, and refusing to talk to the media should not be considered something bad (and is really just an issue between him and the NFL).

    I would give him the TM!

  3. Steroids, football, and Thug life. This guy would be working at a car wash ..or a street corner if her wasn’t so talented.

  4. Randy jet

    All political stuff aside. All Obama, ACA, Boner, etc stuff aside. Netanyahu and the Republicans pimped each other. When you break it down the US, the Presidency, and basic protocol was cr*pped on and the Republicans in Congress are it this time. Such hypocrisy is seldom eclipsed, not even by their adversaries. Haven’t heard much on this angle here.

    1. I watched the speech, and I had to laugh at it. Bibi said how well Obama had provided Israel with weapons of the most advanced type. Then he comes here and basically stabs Obama in the back in return by violating virtually all diplomatic protocol. Talk about NOT trusting Iran! Hell I would have to lock all my valuables up if Bibi was in the same room with me, and make sure my back was up against a wall. Not only does he push the big lie, but he thinks we are stupid enough to forget all his past.

  5. Paul C. Schulte – “Jim22 – I follow PAC-12 football because of the Sun Devils. I could care less about any other teams.”

    The end for me was when Godell went after Peterson and yet lets true criminals play. Hockey is the only pro sport I follow anymore. I’m sure it too will get ruined with time.

  6. I am often with you, Dr. Turley, w/r/t the silliness of the attempts to trademark many “common phrases or symbols.” This phrase, however, is in no way common. It was completely original, conceived of and directly popularized by Lynch himself, and if the man wants to sell a few t-shirts with the tagline on them, I don’t have a problem with that (at least no more of a problem than I have with the misguided law allowing ornamental trademark protection for sports memorabilia in general).

  7. “Refrigerator” Perry! We would have to revert to Ice Box, unless that’s someone’s nickname, maybe Hillary?

  8. I wonder if Darryl Dawkins has trademarked “Chocolate Thunder?” Or Bob Hayes, “Bullet.” Maurice Richard as “Rocket.” Wayne “The Great One” Gretzky. “The Big O” Oscar Robertson. If all trademarked, we would lose half our vocabulary.

  9. Your culture puts dummies on a pedestal. You need to compete with China in Math and Science not football.

  10. Issac, I was waiting for Netanyahu to ask Congress for a declaration of war against Iran. If he had, they would have voted for it!

  11. Seattle is quickly becoming the Philadelphia of football. I root against them and anyone who plays for them at every opportunity.

    What a sad sack.

    1. Jim22 – I follow PAC-12 football because of the Sun Devils. I could care less about any other teams.

  12. What a perversion of the trademark law but then he learned from the best, the “nonprofit” NFL !

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