The name Washington Redskins is no longer a protected trademark thanks to a landmark ruling by the United States Patent and Trademark Office has invalidated six federal trademark registrations for the name of the Washington Redskins. The Trademark office has ruled that the name “Redskins” is “disparaging to Native Americans” and thus cannot be trademarked under a federal law that prohibits trademarks that are disparaging or offensive in nature.

According to Think Progress

The team will almost certainly appeal the case, and it will be able to keep its trademark protection during appeal. Losing the trademark would not force the team to change its name, but it would allow anyone who wanted to use “Redskins” on merchandise or through other means to do so, which could cost the team — and, because of the NFL’s revenue-sharing model, other NFL teams — “every imaginable loss you can think of,” as the team’s lawyers argued in the original case. For that reason, the trademark has long been thought of by opponents of the team’s name as the easiest avenue to changing it.

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