Register Trademarks and Keep the Faith: Trademarks, Religion, and Identity

80 Pages Posted: 28 Apr 2008 Last revised: 11 Feb 2011

See all articles by David A. Simon

David A. Simon

George Washington University Law School; Hanken School of Economics

Date Written: February 8, 2011


Religions frequently wage battles in court over the use of various religious trademarks. These battles, however, are not directed toward winning traditional trademark rights. At the heart of these disputes is a struggle to protect religious identity. This article argues that religions use trademark law to protect their identities because there are no other viable legal means available. Nevertheless, trademark law cannot wholly protect religious identity because of its focus on consumer perception. Because of the deficiency provided by current trademark law, this article proposes a new conceptual framework for resolving these disputes.

Keywords: trademark, trademarks, religion, identity, faith, conflict, consumer, confusion, authenticity, authentic, confusingly, UDRP

Suggested Citation

Simon, David A., Register Trademarks and Keep the Faith: Trademarks, Religion, and Identity (February 8, 2011). IDEA: The Intellectual Property Law Review, Vol. 49, No. 2, p. 233, 2009, Available at SSRN:

David A. Simon (Contact Author)

George Washington University Law School ( email )

2000 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20052
United States

Hanken School of Economics ( email )

PB 287
Helsinki, Vaasa 65101

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