Jeremy N. Sheff
St. John's University School of Law
August 29, 2011
St. John's Legal Studies Research Paper No. 1919328
Recent appearances of trademarks in popular culture – in rap lyrics, on reality TV shows, even in youth riots – have raised the question whether the owners of those trademarks might pursue legal remedies to protect their brands from unwanted social associations. This Essay argues that they cannot, and that we should understand this limitation on trademark rights as grounded in a principle that consumption of certain brands is an expressive act that First Amendment principles place outside trademark owners’ control.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 31
Date posted: August 31, 2011 ; Last revised: February 15, 2012