(WYTV) – The Ohio State University wants to trademark the word “The” in its name.
The university filed an application last Thursday, and the school plans to use the word “the” mainly on t-shirts, baseball caps and hats.
One example is a white hat with a large red THE, and the other is a red scoop-necked T-shirt with a big white THE and the Ohio State logo beneath it.
Patent Attorney Josh Gerben is predicting that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office will say no to the trademark request, but the university would have an opportunity to try again.
The Ohio State University has more than 150 trademarks and applications for trademarks in 17 countries.
In 2017, the university tried to trademark the initials “OSU,” but Oklahoma State University, also known as OSU, objected.
The two schools eventually decided that they could both use it.
Even if the school does get its trademark, it will be up to the Ohio State University to enforce it.
Until then, you’re free to use “the” if you choose.
Ohio University, a completely different school, tweeted, “Good morning from THE first university in the state of Ohio.”
Longtime rival University of Michigan joined in with a tweet suggesting it will try to trademark “of.”