Justices Strike Down Law Banning Disparaging Trademarks @ The New York Times.
“The danger of viewpoint discrimination,” Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote, “is that the government is attempting to remove certain ideas or perspectives from a broader debate. That danger is all the greater if the ideas or perspectives are ones a particular audience might think offensive, at least at first hearing.”
“To permit viewpoint discrimination in this context is to permit Government censorship,” Justice Kennedy wrote.
“If the federal registration of a trademark makes the mark government speech, the federal government is babbling prodigiously and incoherently,”
“It is saying many unseemly things. It is expressing contradictory views. It is unashamedly endorsing a vast array of commercial products and services. And it is providing Delphic advice to the consuming public.”
Read more & PDF.
This is interesting, from how I understand it, the court said – look, if the gov gets in the business of needing to decide what is offensive for a trademark, it’s never going to work out.
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