Undernews is the online report of the Progressive Review, edited by Sam Smith, who covered Washington during all or part of one quarter of America's presidencies and edited alternative journals since 1964. The Review has been on the web since 1995. See main page for full contents

August 3, 2009


UPI - Harvard University's moves to seek U.S. trademarks for everyday phrases such as "Ask what you can do" are defensive measures, a school official says.

The university has poured a lot of money into basing its promotional and advertising campaigns on such phrases as "Ask what you can do," which was famously uttered by President John F. Kennedy in his 1960 inaugural speech, as well as "Lessons learned" and "Managing yourself," The Boston Globe reported Saturday.

So, Rick Calixto, director of the Harvard Trademark Program, says the university needs to move aggressively to trademark the phrases to protect the investments it has made in its branding efforts.

"Since we're spending so much time and money to promote this phrase, we just want to make sure someone doesn't say we can't use it," he told the Globe, adding that a trademark has even been submitted for the phrase, "The world's thinking," even though Harvard isn't using it in any current campaigns.

"You need to reserve something in case you intend to use it," he said. "We're strategically protecting it for use at some point down the line.''


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Copyright and Trade Mark law is way out of hand. Time for a campaign to rework the law based on original intent, not just to maximum the income of parasites.

August 4, 2009 6:27 PM  

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