Hartford Whalers Trademark Expired

whalers_puckAs first reported on the message boards of the Hartford Whalers’ fan site whalerwatch.com, the trademark registration for the mark “Hartford Whalers” has expired.

At first blush, it is logical that the trademark registration has expired, as the mark must be used in commerce to maintain its protection, and the Whalers ceased to exist in 1997.  Nevertheless, the NHL still sells merchandise bearing the name Hartford Whalers and using the Whalers logo.

A quick search of the US Patent and Trademark Office website shows that the most recent application was filed in August of 1999 by the NHL.  The trademark was abandoned in June 2000, but the reason behind the abandonment is unclear.  Prior registration of the trademark, by the ownership of the Whalers in March 1998 and December 2001.

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