The University of Minnesota’s Goldy Gopher mascot. The college ordered a U.K. liquor company to rename its Goldy Gin.
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Never get between a university and its trademarks.Records gathered by the Associated Press show that some major universities send their lawyers after even slight perceived threats to their brands, sending flurries of letters threatening legal action or trying to block new trademarks deemed too close to their own.DUKE UNIVERSITYDuke this year blocked a small California wine company from getting a trademark on its own name, Duke's Folly.Armed with a trademark of the nickname, the university has forced at least two other schools to stop using it, including New York's Keuka College, which now uses the Wolves nickname, and Loyola University New Orleans, which simply shifted to the Wolf Pack.The school, which owns several trademarks related to its Aggies nickname, argued that it was the "true and rightful owner" of the phrase and that the alumni group never had permission to register it.The school said it was too similar to 12th Man, the school's trademarked nickname for its sports fans.When the University of Tennessee tried getting trademarks for then-football coach Butch Jones' slogan "Brick By Brick" in 2014, the University of Minnesota sent its lawyers to stop it.
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