Just two days after a team of Navy Seals shot Osama bin Laden in the face, another of the world’s most feared special ops teams, Disney’s lawyers, sprang into action. On May 3, two days after the Al Qaeda leader’s death was announced by President Obama, Disney applied to the US Patent and Trademark Office for ownership of the mark “Seal Team 6.”
Online commenters, uncharacteristically, were outraged. One wrote “How low can Disney Corp go? I think the answer is very very exceptionally very low.”
The application included designation for Christmas products, which has led to some interesting speculation. As the Seal Team’s “bulletproof dog” begins to get more and more attention, it’s not hard to imagine Disney developing that avenue.
But what hasn’t been mentioned is that somebody beat Disney to trademarking “Seal Team 6.” Twice.[more]
On November 12, 2002, NovaLogic, Inc. applied to trademark “Seal Team 6” for “Computer and video game software, computer programs recorded on CD-ROM’s and compact discs featuring computer games; accessories for playing electronic computer games, namely templates, computer game joysticks and manuals therefor, sold as a unit.”
Om December 14, 2004, NovaLogic tried again, this time listing the mark for “games and playthings, namely action figures and accessories therefor.”
Both applications are currently listed as “abandoned.” Why exactly is unclear, but it might mean Disney may not get its application.
Meanwhile, Disney isn’t the only one looking to get in on the Seal trademark action. In the days after Bin Laden’s death, numerous applications were filed for marks related to the mission.
On May 10, MetroGames US, Inc., an “entertainment services” brand involved in “namely, providing on-line computer games,” filed to trademark “Team 6.”
A day before that, a private individual applied to trademark “Team IV” for “air powered tools, namely, such as drills, screwdrivers, saws, rivet hammers, grinders.”
On the other end of the trademark mission are the Osama bin Laden trademark applications.
On May 2, the day after Bin Laden was announced killed, two private citizens applied to trademark “Osama Bin Gotten!” for “decorative stickers for helmets; Magnetic bumper stickers; Printed pamphlets, brochures, manuals, books, booklets, leaflets, flyers, informational sheets and newsletters, adhesive backed stickers, and kits comprising one or more of the foregoing materials in the field of Osama bin Laden; Stickers; Stickers; Stickers and transfers.”
Also May 2, George Starr applied to trademark “I shot Osama” only for use on “bracelets.” It was joined by an application from Ted Gottlieb for “It took Obama to get Osama.”
That same day, an applicant who listed him or herself as “Obiekea, Udoamaka DBA Thanks to Obama Organization” moved to trademark the very general term “Bin Laden is Dead” for “bumper Sticker, bill board and slogan.”
A pessimistic fact for those looking to trademark Bin Laden, the numerous previous marks using the name have been abandoned.
But who was fastest on the draw? That would be the May 1st, 2011 application from “Milk Money Clothing” to trademark “Obama Got Osama.” May Day! May Day! Let the conspiracy theories begin!