This week, Nike won a legal injunction against Skins, who had had the temerity to use the Swooshstika in an playful way in its advertising.
Nike, of course, had moral weight on its side:
"We will take whatever steps we need to when we believe other companies are infringing."
Pretty clear cut, huh?
Of course, this is the same Nike who pinched Minor Threat's artwork and seemed puzzled when the punks weren't delighted:
Minor Threat's music and iconographic album cover have been an inspiration to countless skateboarders since the album came out in 1984. And for the members of the Nike Skateboarding staff, this is no different. Because of the album's strong imagery and because our East Coast tour ends in Washington DC, we felt that it was a perfect fit.
There is a well-established principle that if you don't protect your trademark, it can lapse into the public domain. Maybe there should also be a principle that if you, as a company, violate other people's copyrights, your own should lose legal protection? It might focus the minds a little more, don't you think?