The Associated Press
ASHBURN, Va. — The Washington Redskins on Thursday formally appealed a ruling that stripped the team of trademark protection, the latest legal maneuver in the franchise’s attempt to defend its name against those who consider it a racial slur.
The team announced that it had filed its complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia and that it “points out the many errors” in the decision by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
The office’s Trademark Trial and Appeal Board voted 2-1 on June 18 to cancel six uses of “Redskins” trademarked from 1967 to 1990, saying the name is “disparaging of Native Americans.”
“We believe that the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board ignored both federal case law and the weight of the evidence, and we look forward to having a federal court review this obviously flawed decision,” Redskins lawyer Bob Raskopf said in the team’s statement.
The team had previously said it would appeal the ruling and had two months to do so. The trademark protection remains in place while the matter makes its way through the courts, a process that could take years. A similar ruling by the trademark board in 1999 was overturned on a technicality in 2003. Native Americans have been challenging the trademark since 1992.