Just went to look at ordering a HE16MAN shirt and noticed the amout of items removed from the store! WOW! How dissapointing! Glad I picked up a "strike a pose" shirt while it was available!
MGoStore merchandise removal....
I get so many comments/compliments/double takes on the strike. Pose shirt.
Got several compliments at South Bend last weekend!... From Michigan fans obviously!
Everyone loves the "Strike a Pose" shirt. Get comments on it all the time.
Given the last couple games, I think a new strike a pose t-shirt is called for.
We have been ordered to remove many MGoStore designs by the University of Michigan. They feel that these designs violate NCAA compliance rules as well as certain University trademarks. As a thank you for your support of Brian, MGoBlog, and the MGoBlog Store, receive 10% off any purchase at www.moesportshops.com by using the code: mgoblog10
Thank you for your understanding and support and we appreciate your patience as we figure all of this out and continue to provide you with unique apparel. Go Blue!
Thanks a lot FREEP...
Any thoughts that the aforementioned "violations of NCAA compliance " issues are related to the university playing things super safe with the NCAA due to our 2 years of self-imposed probation?
Thought: you are paranoid.
We don't need a T-shirt to tell people Ohio is the worst state ever but I still want one. How does that violate NCAA compliance or University trademark. We can't use the colors Maize and Blue on a shirt?
Everytime I wear that shirt, several people ask me where I found it,
Go to those generic university stores in the mall if you want one. They have them.
when I did
Today is pay day and I was getting my Shoelace T-shirt!!! I think I am just going to lay down and cry at my desk today
I'm so bummed!!! There MUST be more to it!
Can someone explain to me how the "He16man" shirt is any more of a compliance issue than the University selling #16 Michigan jerseys?
Come on guys, fight this! Yeah, some of the shirts were definitely compliance issues, but not all!
Probably because it's emphasizing a particular player for a particular award. It may have something to do with that or the fact that it ties in with the Heisman? I'm guessing, of course.
"Heisman" is a trademark. My sister tried to make a "Hart for Heisman" shirt back in 06, but the T Shirt company wouldn't let her do that because of trademark issues.
True, "Heisman" is a trademark. "He16man" is not. It isn't a person's name, and it isn't the name of an award. Technically speaking it's just alpha-numeric gibberish.
Not only that, but it's not like "Heisman" is the University's trademark, so they should have no leg to stand on there.
Yeah the problem is that the He-man cartoon is mad that we stuck a "16" in it.
Missed this -- you beat me to it.
It is clearly still infringing on someone's trademark.
There's no way that 'shoelace' is trademarked. Balderdash!
I was going to get a shirt before I head down for the MSU game. Damn the university suits. Damn them to hell.
Wow. There are only eight shirts left? Basically Jalen shirts plus one Lloyd Carr one. Though Underground Printing seems to have a few more listed.
Answer me this Batman, why is the Lloyd Carr one OK, but the JoePa one is gone? That clearly makes no sense.
HEI6SMAN... shoelace... those are both far less associated with a player than a #16 jersey. But the University will sell those like none other. Very dissapointed.
I thought the same thing about the Lloyd one! An actual picture of the guy is on the shirt, yet "shoelace" is gone! WTF?
Thank goodness I got mine two days ago! This sucks, though... hopefully they can come up with some more awesome designs that won't cause any controversy.
What? Like a shirt that says "I went to MGoBlog and all I could get was this t-shirt thanks to the lovely people working for the Univer$ity of Michigan."
Sure. I might buy that.
I know the internet is all about screaming bloody murder about everything, but in this case perhaps it applies.
I loved these shirts and own a bunch of them already. Hopefully, the order I placed when the HE16MAN shirt first showed up will still come.
What saddens me the most is the loss of all the future shirts. There has been some great creativity here that will now never happen.
that the designers of these shirts went out of their way to make sure they didn't violate the stupid guidelines!.... And did a great job doing it!
This definitely changes my Christmas shopping plans... And not in a good way.
I'm gonna rant some more, because I can't find a 16 jersey anywhere, which was my backup plan if I didn't end up getting a t-shirt from here. I'm traveling 8 hours for the MSU game and hell if I'm not gonna have some nice apparel supporting my team, namely Denard. Epic failure all around on UM's merchandising.
I've just about had it with the fun police and this time they're going to hear about it. I need an email address.
That is a great shirt and someone explain how it violates anything NCAA related? Is speaking the truth really a copyright infringement??
I don't see that it should even fall under the NCAA. It isn't commenting on college or athletics. It's just a geographic fact.
10% off to boot. email me at [email protected]
Awesome. Email sent.
Surely the existing inventory will be available out of the trunk of a late '70s model sedan in some dark alley around the time the bars close...(and, yes, I will stop calling you Shirley)
Is there anyone that can send me the shirt designs so I could... like... print them onto shirts myself....
I'm not saying I can make my own "HE16MAN" shirt... but...
I'm just saying...
I have a friend that runs a shirt/uniform business and I will get him to make some for me (not to sell). I especially want a Worst State shirt, but had a few picked for Christmas gifts as well.
...the legal dept. overseeing this Stalinesque removal of all things MGoRighteous can kiss my Canadian ass.
I'm going old school...a couple of internet clicks here...
...a t-shirt transfer kit there...
Everything is gone! What bullshit.
How does "Space, Bitches, Space" violate a trademark?
I don't get "Shoelace" either. That's not a trademark. How does an independent company printing a word on a shirt violate compliance rules?
I can sort of see the argument for the "Space, bitches" one - even though it's referencing an historical event, it's obviously inspired by a commercial that the University used to run - that might not fall under fair use.
The "Shoelace" one I think had the words "D ROB" imprinted on the end of the lace - that might be a step across the line as well.
I can see that. I think the "Space, Bitches" actually had the likeness of the astronauts on it, so that's probably the real problem with it.
Hopefully the designs get the necessary "tweaks" and get put back up.
I'd thik the university would want the shirt to be sold. The point of the commercial was to advertise the university, and I can't see how that shirt doesn't spread the commercial's message.
Um... How is it that an independent business that is completely unaffiliated with the University is subject to NCAA compliance rules? I mean obviously the University can't make a HE16MAN shirt, and obviously MGoStore can't do any endorsement deals with the student athletes, but Denard Robinson and Desmond Howard are public figures - references to their history, nicknames, etc. fall under fair use, and I can't imagine the NCAA putting sanctions on a school for the actions of a completely unaffiliated business.
And to think I was just glad to get one of the Returning to Glory Since 1993 shirts when they still said Notre Dame and not just ND...
Not surprising, but a bummer nonetheless.
This has some merit but mostly sucks.
Still looking foward to your great designs, SixZero.
Brian's blog is his main source of revenue and I think I had read that the t-shirt sales were a big part of that. Having said that, he has a lot to lose if he were to get sued for any compliance issues.
So the question is, would it be possible for an individual, like me for example, to have the t-shirts made and sold? This way it has nothing to do with Mgoblog. We would have to set up a way though so Brian still receives the same compensation he was before.
And I'm not volunteering to do this, I don't have the time, but just curious if that would be a way to circumvent the compliance issues and keeping Brian and his blog out of it
Damn I was going to get a Death Roh shirt, guess I missed my chance!
This is a bunch of BS!
Im wondering why the Jalen Rose shirts are ok but all the stuff removed is not?
Could it possibly be because according to the record books Jalen's teams never played at Michigan? (sigh)
I wanted a Shoelace shirt!
I obviously haven't read the letter from the university, so I can't be sure what rationale it asserts for wanting the shirts removed, but I believe almost any trademark claims it might make would be 100% unadulterated bull honkey. The university has absolutely no argument upon which to claim trademark rights in, for example, the word "shoelace." Furthermore, I can't imagine what NCAA violations could be committed by MGoStore, since it's not affiliated with the university, so I don't see how their selling shirts promoting a player for an individual award is different from fans in the stands holding signs that do the same, which seems to happen routinely. Oddly enough, I believe the Lloyd shirt might be subject to the strongest clim (based on personal-likeness ownership), but that claim would presumably have to be asserted by Lloyd himself, since he's retired.
What I suspect has happened is that U of M, in a cynical attempt to control every drop of goodwill generated by the university and convert it to dollars, sent out a broad demand letter covering everything in the store even vaguely related to the program or its current players or employees. They did so because, regardless of whether their claims have any legal merit, they assume they have nothing to lose by sending a demand letter, and because most small businesses with no lawyers will just roll over and die when they see the abbreviateion "esq." in a signature line.
If you, like me, are irritated by this behavior on the university's part, probably the best thing to do would be to contact them and let them know that, in fact, they do have something to lose by shutting down legitimate expressions of enthusiasm by fans and alumni; namely, the very goodwill that makes their trademarks valuable. My love of the creativity exhibited by the MGoStore designs, and my annoyance at overreaching in the use of trademark law, will now make me think twice before purchasing officially licensed Michigan gear.
it's working now - my bad.
Absolutely arbitrary decision! Annarbortshirtcompany.com has some Denard for Heisman shirts for sale, but they aren't anywhere near as awesome design-wise as the HE16MAN shirt.
what are the odds I'll get it? or at least a refund? It is now friday....
You can't misappropriate another's likeness for your own gain. It's not a trademark issue on all the claims. The "he's a public figure!" argument is actually worse for your case (that only works for whether someone is sladered/libeled). If a mark can be attributed to a person's likeness, then you can't profit off of it without that person's consent.
This doesn't explain every takedown at issue here, but Brian et al likely took down mostly everything for now in an abundance of caution pursuant to some run of the mill cease and desist letter. He is probably (or should, at least) consulting a lawyer to get a better grasp on where the lines are and how not to cross them. The shirts will probably come back in the future if I had to guess.
"Shoelace" is not a likeness. The number 16 is not a likeness. Lloyd's face IS a likeness, yet it's still there. So go figure.
Where's that picture of a cat pushing a watermelon out of a lake?
I call a big pile of hobo bullshit on this.
be a likeness. Especially when paired with his number. If it's attributable to Denard, which it clearly is, and is being used for commercial gain, which it clearly is, he can be sued. You are just wrong here.
But not by the University. They don't own his likeness rights.
his own likeness yet. He's a college athlete. I'm not sure he'd even have stading to assert that claim, but I bet the University could. The University does sort of own his likeness rights while he is affiliated with the University and unable to market himself.
Was there an outcome yet over the ownership of likenesses in the EA Sports games? I know one (or several) players had sued because there was money made from their likenesses but there were never paid.
I'm not a lawyer, just a B-School grad, so my logic may not apply.
It would just make him ineligible. Which would probably be a net loss in future profits. But the University doesn't own it. Just like the Store has to play a game of close, but not too close, the University has to the do the same thing...as the previous post points out in say video game likenesses. If the University had standing to profit off of their likeness, then the video games and jerseys and calendars (always previous, not current, players) would have the real player name and likenesses. So yes, they can own a "Michigan #16" likeness. But they can't really own "Shoelaces".
It's interesting because a number of these shirts have been up for quite some time...and it's not like they're much different than the guys with the stands on the street who have ripped off a number of the designs for their own profit.
I wonder if this has more to do with who is selling them and their relationship to the University as opposed to what is being sold. To my knowledge, before buying Moe's, Underground Printing would produce t-shirts angled toward Michigan (like the MGoShirts), but never use any University trademarks. Now that they run Moe's and sell licensed material, the University has more control to threaten UGP with revoking their agreement to sell licensed product like jerseys, hats, etc. Perhaps a lawyer can speak to this more, but unless they go on a major cease and desist binge and shut down the shady push carts, then I think it's a targeted threat at a licensed retailer.
Glad I got my Worst State Ever shirt, but damn, I was bout to get a Shoelace one, this really sucks.
A bunch of empty shelves??
Even if there are some items that need to be removed (player name, numbers, etc), or things that look like Michigan uniforms, as many have said, how is a "Worst State Ever" shirt a violation of anything?? If that's the standard they're going to go by, I'd say it's worth fighting. It depends on what's more valuable...MGoBlog access (which it never had till recently), or shirt profits, because this would basically neuter the whole company. Or turn them all into Moe's. (Which contract-wise seems more the motivation for this...the thing that's really changed is they're a legitimate contractor with the U now).
Sometimes the University of Michigan makes me sad.
The NCAA sucks. Let us fans buy some damn shirts.
I went in at like 10 this morning asking if they had them in women's sizes yet ... and now I'll never get them :[ They gave me the 10% off card though, maybe I'll get myself a sweet pair of M leggings