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The Mothership does everything big. From big takes (aka #HOTSPORTSTAKE) to big productions to a big trademark portfolio. That's right. ESPN understands the importance of federal trademark protection to the tune of over 150 registered marks. A lot can be learned from ESPN's trademark activities. For example, most of ESPN's recent filings relate to the SEC Network and soccer - a glimpse at where the company's programming is likely heading. But we are not here to speculate. We are here to list our five favorite ESPN trademarks, in no particular order.
1. ESPN (logo)
Trademark Status: Logo registered as trademark April 28, 1987.
We write about rebranding a lot. Sometimes it goes well. Sometimes not so well. Sometimes a brand gets it right with the first logo it registers. ESPN's iconic logo has endured for more than 25 years, and there is not indication it is going anywhere.
Trademark Status: Registered as trademark December 11, 1990.
From ESPN's iconic logo to ESPN's iconic program. It all began with SportsCenter. The show remains ESPN's anchor program today. The Big Show has produced no shortage of polarizing starpower, including Chris Berman, Keith Olbermann, Dan Patrick, and Stuart Scott. When ESPN is ready, Bill and I are prepared to pitch our daily podcast "The Center for SportsCenter: Highlights of Today's Highlights from SportsCenter," where we recap the day's best highlights from SportsCenter.
While we are waiting for that call, enjoy this screenshot of the specimen ESPN submitted with its application for the SPORTSCENTER mark:
And these classic "This is SportsCenter" commercials:
3. THE DEUCE
Trademark Status: Registered as trademark February 14, 1995.
When ESPN rolled out its sister network, ESPN2, it nicknamed the new network "The Deuce." Would you believe ESPN actually filed for federal trademark protection for THE DEUCE ten days before filing its application for ESPN2? Because it did. The nickname was popular for sometime, getting its due in the 2004 movie Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story.
4. Pardon the Interruption
Trademark Status: Registered as trademark August 13, 2002.
Pardon the Interruption, starring Tony Kornheiser, Michael Wilbon, and Tony "stat boy" Reali, debuted on October 22, 2001. The show was a breakout success. Likely realizing what it had, ESPN sought federal protection for PARDON THE INTERRUPTION one month later. The show remains popular today, averaging over one million viewers on a daily basis.
5. COLLEGE GAMEDAY
Trademark Status: Registered as trademark November 22, 2005 (for hats and t-shirts).
College GameDay premiered in 1987 and moved toward its current live format in 1993. If you frequent the Trademarkology world, you may have noticed we enjoy college football. College GameDay is renowned as one of the best sports broadcasts around. We do not disagree. Put on your team's colors . . . FOOTBALL IS ALMOST HERE!!!
The lawyers at Trademarkology provide trademark registration services backed by the experience and service of one of the nation's oldest law firms. Click here to begin the process of protecting your brand name with a federally registered trademark.