helicopter-military.jpgSan Diego – Ever since the recent killing of Osama bin Laden, there has been a race to capitalize on the heroism of the U.S. Navy Seals.  Just days after bin Laden succumbed in a firefight with what was identified as the “Seal Team 6”, Disney filed a trademark application for it. 

This, however, was not the first time “Seal Team 6” had been applied for.  Back in 2002 and 2004, before anyone would ever know how significant that term would be, Nova Logic, Inc. filed trademark applications for it also.  Both Applications have since abandoned – see one here.  

Sensing a branding opportunity to capitalize on its bravery and heroism, the U.S. Department of the Navy recently applied to protect two trademarks, “Navy Seals” and “Seal Team.”  The trademarks lists the following for applicable goods and services: “indicating membership in a(n) to indicate membership in an organization of the Department of the Navy that develops and executes military missions involving special operations strategy, doctrine and tactics”.

Although the Navy claims first use of the trademarks as of December 31, 1962, it is surprising that it didn’t apply for these trademarks years ago.  The applications were also clearly not filed by a trademark attorney as the descriptions listed are defective.  Thus, the USPTO will have to issue Office Actions requesting clarification. 

Just last year, both the U.S. Marine Corps and the U.S. Army applied to trademark their iconic names.  The U.S. Military appears to be neglecting its trademark rights and may want to hire an intellectual property law firm to ensure that its rights are protected.