HomeOther Philly SportsThe Phillies’ Effort to Trademark ‘Bedlam at the Bank’ Faces Obstacle –...

The Phillies’ Effort to Trademark ‘Bedlam at the Bank’ Faces Obstacle – Phillies Nation

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The Philadelphia Phillies attempt to copyright the phrase “Bedlam at the Bank” has hit a roadblock, according to trademark attorney Josh Gerben.

Of course, this was the phrase that Phillies radio announcer Scott Franzke used to describe the scene at Citizens Bank Park after Bryce Harper hit his iconic go-ahead home run in Game 5 of the 2022 NLCS against the San Diego Padres.

Back in March, the Phillies filed to trademark the phrase with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. They filed two separate applications, which Gerben tells Phillies Nation went under the “clothing” and “entertainment services” categories.

But the USPTO listing, as of December 11, says that a non-final action document has been sent to the Phillies informing them that their initial filings have been denied on both applications.

The reason for the initial denial, according to Gerben, is that the University of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State University have already trademarked the phrase “Bedlam.”

This doesn’t necessarily put an end to the attempt by the Phillies to trademark the phrase, with Gerben noting that the organization could either appeal saying that there’s a difference between “Bedlam” and “Bedlam at the Bank” or try to work out an agreement with Oklahoma and Oklahoma State.

The first path is unlikely to be successful in the estimation of Gerben, because “the word ‘bedlam’ is not used often in sports, which makes the trademark owned by the Oklahoma schools very strong.”

 

It’s unclear if the second path would be any more fruitful, with Gerben saying that “unless they want to be nice” the two Oklahoma universities don’t have anything legally that would compel them to negotiate with the Phillies for some sort of agreement on the phrase.

Gerben adds that he’s a Phillies fan, so he’s hopeful that the organization will ultimately be successful in their quest. But in his professional opinion, “the chances of a successful outcome are, at best, 50%.”

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