Disney wastes no time. A mere two days after the assassination of Osama bin Laden, the entertainment giant put in an application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for use of the term “SEAL Team 6.” If this seems bizarre and sick, it is.
The Navy countered by filing two patents with the office: “Navy SEALS” and “SEAL Team.” As if not anticipating this move, Disney withdrew its application for “SEAL Team 6,” saying, “Out of deference to the Navy’s application for these trademarks, we have withdrawn ours.”
The company had reportedly planned to use the “SEAL Team 6″ phrase on (this is not a joke): “gymnastic and sporting articles (except clothing); hand-held units for playing electronic games… Christmas stockings; Christmas tree ornaments and decorations; snow globes.” Apparently, this filing was in anticipation of an “NCIS”-style television show.
Disney has often found itself in embarrassing predicaments, but this may be the worst. Why would the Navy not own the trademark/s of itself? This is a question Disney sought very unsuccessfully to exploit.
Better luck next wartime, Disney.