Blog Entry

N.C. State wants to remain one school Wolfpack

Posted on: March 29, 2011 1:44 pm
Edited on: March 29, 2011 1:47 pm
Posted by Tom Fornelli

As we've seen recently, universities aren't afraid to go after high schools for copyright infringement on their logos and other trademarks. It doesn't really seem fair for schools like Florida State to go after high schools, but it's the world we live in where college athletics equal big bucks, and merchandise sales certainly add to it. Further north in the ACC, N.C. State now finds itself in a similar situation, though it isn't going after a high school. No, N.C. State is going after a small university in Louisiana called Loyola.

It seems Loyola calls its sports teams the Wolfpack, and N.C. State wants to make sure that it is the only Wolfpack in the country.
The Jesuit school in Louisiana has called itself the Wolfpack for more than a half-century, but N.C. State says it owns the exclusive legal right to use the Wolfpack name and logo.
N.C. State Assistant General Counsel Shawn Troxler last month notified Loyola officials that their use of the Wolfpack image constitutes trademark infringement. Loyola's use of Wolfpack could lead to confusion and misunderstanding in the marketing-intense, big-money world of collegiate sports.
"People could think something is being sponsored by N.C. State," Troxler said Sunday. "We're in the beginning stages of discussion of how they could use the term 'Wolfpack.' "
N.C. State trademarked the name Wolfpack back in 1983, though Loyola has used the name since the 1930s. Though not trademarked, N.C. State didn't begin using the nickname until 1947. So I'm not sure how this will work in a courtroom, since I didn't study Mascot Law in college. What I do know is that N.C. State went through a similar case with Nevada, which ended up changing its name from Wolfpack to Wolf Pack. It's possible that Loyola may end up doing the same thing.

Since: Jul 2, 2011
Posted on: July 2, 2011 4:55 pm

N.C. State wants to remain one school Wolfpack

So from what I just read you called the University of Nevada a "little" college. Last time I checked its a university as well as has an enrollment of about 17,000+ students. Now another thing to note is that the Nevada Wolf Pack, has been the Wolf Pack this way since 1923. So, telling Nevada that Nevada needs to trademark something different is kind of arrogant when you honestly don't know the history of the institution. I won't speak fro Loyola, since I don't know the history of that institution. But it seems to me that because N.C. State is a "bigger" school (due to conference affiliation I assume) you think that Nevada is basically out of luck. 
Also, when N.C. State sued Nevada; N.C. State took a slap in the face and called it a "victory". When it was revealed that Nevada has been the Wolf Pack in its current form for almost 80 years the lawsuit basically went downhill. Which led to the future agreement saying that Nevada can't ever use the "Wolf Pack" logo which N.C. State also claims to have been copied in red.
Now if you know anything about Nevada (which I will assume not), you would know that Nevada does not have any red what so ever associated with the University of Nevada. There is no red on the campus, the largest collegiate Starbucks Coffee in the United States is currently at Nevada, and when they were building they tried to put red in there. It was forbidden by the university needless to say.

Also, Nevada does have a throwback logo that looks a lot like the N.C. State one (which has also been in use for a very very long time at the university.) But also what they call the "lightning wolf" there as well.

In this case, N.C. State bit off a little more than they could chew and called it a "victory." Thank you for referring to Nevada as a small college, when its not a small college.  

Since: Oct 16, 2007
Posted on: April 11, 2011 6:19 am

N.C. State wants to remain one school Wolfpack

Coming on a web site or message board and tossing around insults, while not even addressing the issue being talked about, is pretty sad, folks.  Especially when the immaterial comments being thrown around highlight just how clueless the thrower is.  And so-called insults directed at agriculture and other sciences (like MooU, etc.) are actually amusing since they really aren't insulting at all.  Only those of you who try to use them as insults truly lack enough intelligence to realize that such terms aren't really insulting.

you will never be above the 3rd most prestigious school in the state no matter how hard you try to pretend like you matter.
Forgetting for the moment that this isn't even pertinent to the discussion at hand, I will say that apparently we mattered enough for you to come here, read an article in which you claim to have no interest, then take the time to make a feeble attemtp at insulting us.  I would have said "take the time to think up an insult", but since all you did was re-tread old overused insults, there was apparently no thinking involved (predictably).
So I guess you're going to try to sue the Discovery Channel or Animal Planet every time they run a special on a "wolfpack"?
Actually, no.  That has absolutely nothing to do with this or any such case.

If you had taken the time to learn about that on which you are commenting (rather than spending your time consumed with showing us how much we don't matter) you would have a better understanding of copyright law.  Nonetheless, you did unknowingly highlight a part of the issue when you used the word "wolfpack" word.

A pack of wolves is called a wolf pack.  It is a descriptive term which describes a multiple of a particular animal, in this case wolves.  Similar to a pride of lions or a flock of birds, it is not a proper noun.

On the other hand, "Wolfpack" is a proper noun.  One word, capitalized.  And it IS copyrighted by NC State.  Just ask the University of Nevada, whose mascot is now the Wolf Pack (Incidentally, they also have been guilty of trademark infringement against some of NC State's registered logos in the past as well).

Now, filing this lawsuit, which is perfectly within the rights of NC State, is not to keep Loyola from using wolves as their mascot.  Instead it is to make sure they don't use the copyrighted term "Wolfpack" in such a way as to be unclear/confusing, or in such a way that would reflect poorly on NC State.  Loyola can either agree to whatever terms NC State asks of them (NC State's legal right) if they wish to continue using "Wolfpack", or they can do what Nevada chose to do and simply change their mascot name to Wolf Pack.

Incidentally, asserting one's legal rights when there is a copyright infringement isn't always because the copyright holder wishes to stop the infringing party from using the copyrighted term.  Sometimes it is merely to stake legal claim in the form of a precedent so that if the infringing party does anything in the future, the copyright holder can more easily protect itself.  Believe it or not, the legal argument "Well we've been using the copyrighted term for X number of years and they never said anything before" (I'm paraphrasing) really does have legal standing sometimes.  Telling the courts now that we do care if (and how) the term is used is as much to protect future interests as anything else.

Since: Mar 29, 2011
Posted on: March 30, 2011 9:28 am

N.C. State wants to remain one school Wolfpack

I don't know why NC State is going after Loyola, but the people on here talking about how prestigious the school is and the students that go there are ridiculous. Tarheelsunc50, you wouldn't be eating anything if it wasn't for the farmers in the agriculture program, and some of the technologies you use wouldn't be around if it wasn't for some of the engineers that attend the school you are talking about. Talking about this siutation is one thing, but attacking the students that go there is just ridiculous.

Since: Aug 7, 2008
Posted on: March 29, 2011 8:02 pm

N.C. State wants to remain one school Wolfpack

You cannot trademark a "common name" but you can trademark a unique one. However, exceptions have been made that allows multiple entities to use the same name. Apple Music was first created in England, and withstood Steve Jobs' Apple challenge on the basis that Apple Music was not easily confused with Apple Computers. But then Steve Jobs wanted to control the music world so he bullied Apple Music into submission. Now when you hear Apple Music you no longer think of the British company. 
NC State must be really desperate. They should just rename themselves to be the "Woaf PaQ". They would have better success than trying to copyright a name that another university has been using long before them.

Since: Jan 6, 2008
Posted on: March 29, 2011 7:15 pm

N.C. State wants to remain one school Wolfpack

Dumb farmers. How can you trademark a noun? So I guess you're going to try to sue the Discovery Channel or Animal Planet every time they run a special on a "wolfpack"? If youdid not want anyone else to use your name, you should have been more original. I hope that Loyola countersues and NC State has to change their name. Then they can rename themselves the Farmers or something equally appropriate. MOO U, you will never be above the 3rd most prestigious school in the state no matter how hard you try to pretend like you matter. Even ECU has caught you guys by now.

Since: Aug 18, 2010
Posted on: March 29, 2011 5:10 pm

N.C. State wants to remain one school Wolfpack

I can't believe I am commenting on this article three times, but here goes.  Loyola had the name first.  NC State stole it from them, put a copyright on it, and are now trying to bully the Jesuit school into changing their name.  Loyola had used that name for 50 years before NC State trademarked it.  I am surprised that NC State was even able to get a trademark on something that had been out there for over 50 years, but whatever.  Loyola does not even have a football team, and is the smallest of players in the college sports scene, so I don't see where the confusion would come from.  How many of you NC State fans (more of them than I thought) have ever gotten confused when someone was talking about Loyola and thought they were talking about NC State?  Yea, that is what I thought.  They suck at sports and are now trying to bully a small Jesuit school.  FYI--I am not Jesuit either, just don't like bullies.

Since: Mar 21, 2011
Posted on: March 29, 2011 3:45 pm

N.C. State wants to remain one school Wolfpack

I'm curious as to how many schools have identities as Tar Heels, Hoosiers, Crimson Tide, Longhorns, Sooners, Nittany Lions, Terrapins, Gators, Buckeyes, Razorbacks, or Orangemen.  Usually these names are thought to belong to major universities, and I think they all would be pissed off if another school, big or little, were to market themselves with this name that has been identified with the big school for years.  NC State is a major university and has been known as the Wolfpack for years.  The little colleges in Nevada and at Loyola New Orleans should trademark something different. 

Since: Mar 29, 2011
Posted on: March 29, 2011 3:22 pm

N.C. State wants to remain one school Wolfpack

Wow LSU, your "guess" is so completely wrong its laughable! No're pathetic. If they want to keep their name to themselves let them do it geez

Since: Aug 18, 2010
Posted on: March 29, 2011 3:15 pm

N.C. State wants to remain one school Wolfpack

@NCSU Spartan--It does not sound much like principle to me.  It sounds more like greed.  If it was based on principle, NC State would just let it go.  But, as this is based on greed, they are after the little Jesuit school in Louisiana, even though the Jesuit school used the name long before NC State did.  I suspect in the end, the poor little Jesuit school in Louisiana will do like Nevada did and just cave in to the power and wealth of the big boys.  If they would choose to fight, I would promise to help with the legal fees.  No offense to you because you seem quite rational, but I find NC State's attitude here pathetic.  We stole someone else's idea, put a patent on it, and now we will make you pay for what we stole.  That's balls, especially coming from a school that has accomplished nothing athletically in years.

Since: Dec 30, 2009
Posted on: March 29, 2011 2:56 pm

N.C. State wants to remain one school Wolfpack

LSU, its the principle more than anything else...regardless of who 'had it first', we are the ones who have the trademark.  As a State fan, and alumni, I would tend to agree its silly and not worth the time either of us has taken to write about it on this board much less the time and money either univeristy will spend on lawyers to settle this issue.

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