Reuters/ Jan Wolfe/ January 4, 2019
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday agreed to decide whether a federal law that blocks trademarks for brand names or logos bearing profane words or sexual imagery violates free speech rights in a case involving a clothing brand called â€śFUCT.â€ť
The justices will hear the U.S. Patent and Trademark Officeâ€™s appeal of a lower court decision that the agency should have allowed fashion designer Erik Brunetti to trademark the â€śFUCTâ€ť brand name, which sounds like, but is spelled differently than, a profanity.
At issue is a provision of U.S. trademark law that lets the trademark office deny requests for trademarks on â€śimmoralâ€ť and â€śscandalousâ€ť words and symbols, and whether the law violates the guarantee of free speech enshrined in the U.S. Constitutionâ€™s First Amendment.
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