Maple Grove, MN asked in Copyright and Trademark for Minnesota

Q: What are the general rules for political slogans and their use on products that I would sell? Thanks in advance.

I am looking at printing some political shirts for my business in the coming years. I am wondering what the rules are for using political slogans on products that are intended for sale? Thanks

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3 Lawyer Answers
Marcos Garciaacosta
Marcos Garciaacosta

A: There are some registered, such as Make America Great Again, so you would be violating his registration

You can make variations and parody though

You should consult with an attorney

Linda Liang agrees with this answer

Linda Liang
Linda Liang
  • Trademarks Lawyer
  • Boca Raton, FL

A: There is no simple answer to this question. It essentially is a question of Freedom of Speech. It is a constitution question. Also, copyright law is also governing. You should definitely work with an attorney.

A: There are slogans, and there are slogans.

Even if the First Amendment protects free speech (slogans do fall under that), their purpose, content and meaning may be falling outside of the First Amendment protection if the slogan calls for violence, incites riots, unrests, or promotes open discrimination against minorities etc.

Thus, there is no clear answer on that, it will be within the context of your slogan that, however, unpopular, or controversial, must stay within the First Amendment protections.

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