Abandoning Jesus

David Galbraith points out the irony of the “Creative Commons” trademark application. I’ve been heavily immersed in the study of trademark law lately. I’m taking Intellectual Property and Trademarks this semester. The fact that the former includes the latter resulted in my spending four consecutive hours listening to professors describing the Abercrombie & Fitch categorization of fanciful, arbitrary, suggestive, descriptive, and generic marks (“generic marks” is a misnomer of course). My favorite ironic mark is “Freedom of Expression”, registered by Kembrew McLeod, though there was a rumour going around that Coca-Cola was claiming ownership of the “Jesus” mark. (Indeed, it used to be listed on their “brands” page.)
I looked up Jesus registrations to check. It turns out that ten people have actually registered “Jesus” but all of these are logo registrations. I can just see the board meeting now: “Johnson, how did it go with the lawyers?” “Good sir, we have obtained the exclusive rights to Jesus.”
Of course, six of the ten Jesus marks have been abandoned. “(ten years later…) Johnson, do we still have the rights to Jesus?” “No sir, we have abandoned Jesus.”