The Slants: A Band Name Too Racist to Trademark?

Portland outfit is composed entirely of Asian-Americans

In this exclusive Q&A, Rock it Out! Blog host Sami Jarroush chats with The Slants frontman Simon Tam. The band, which is comprised entirely of Asian-Americans, has been attempting to trademark their name for the past five years only to be turned down by the US Patent and Trademark Office, who says the band’s name is offensive to people of Asian descent.

Tam discusses what the government has used as evidence against the band; how words that are offensive towards Asians are currently trademarked by non-Asians; and The Slants’ upcoming court battle to finally determine if they can trademark their own name.

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