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Jamie-Law
Jamie-Law, Solicitor
Category: Law
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Experience:  Solicitor
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Can i use a club name in a graphic for personal use?

Customer Question

can i use a club name in a graphic for personal use?
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jamie-Law replied 4 months ago.

Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you with this.

Could you please explain your situation a little more?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Hi. I created a small graphic using the name of a martial arts club of which I am a member. There are no current trademarked logos or anything for the name of the organization "WJJF Ireland". The graphic was not questioned, but when I had a small embroidered patch made as a sample, I was told I needed explicit permission to use the words "WJJF Ireland" in any shape or form.
Expert:  Jamie-Law replied 4 months ago.

You would need permission from the club technically because it would the club that owns the name.

It does not need to be trademarked.

However if you have had 1 patch made only then it seems unreasonable for the club to get upset.

But technically you do need permission, as it is the name of their club
Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Is it reasonable that I be issued with a formal letter about my misuse of the name, considering that they did not object at all to repeated use in online graphics (they actually liked them), nor was any money made from the item. Can the organization own an acronym or abbreviation, as WJJF is not the full name?
Expert:  Jamie-Law replied 4 months ago.

They can yes, because in effect its like saying you cant use M&S when everyone knows it stands for Marks and Spencer.

I dont think they have acted reasonably at all - no.

Does that clarify?

Jamie-Law, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 1716
Experience: Solicitor
Jamie-Law and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Okay, thank you. I had thought they were over-reacting about it, as I was unaware that they owned the right to the nickname and didn't object to online usage. I have apologized and removed the "wjjf" from the patch, and will formally respond to any notice I get.Thank you for your help!
Expert:  Jamie-Law replied 4 months ago.

Indeed. All the best.

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Just as a follow-up, my written warning was delivered via my club last night, printed yet unsigned. It appears as if the only formal charges are to be an instance of misconduct within the organization (formally going on record), and the request to keep the image of the patch off public forums, and to never mention it on forums. There seems to be no actual "cease and desist" or legal ramifications, and no request to destroy the actual item. Just an "in-house" formal write-up.Thanks again for your advice!
Jessica
Expert:  Jamie-Law replied 4 months ago.

Ah ok - thats good news then I think Jessica?!

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Legally. :) I do feel he is still being unreasonable, and the fact that I don't warrant a signature and a first-class stamp is disappointing! It will blow over eventually.Cheers!
Expert:  Jamie-Law replied 4 months ago.

I agree!

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