NEWS

Pride organizations in Vancouver and Toronto jostle over trademarks

07/20/2015 12:18 EDT | Updated 07/20/2016 05:59 EDT
Pride Toronto has applied for trademarks for several of its parades, angering other Pride groups in Canada.

The organization, which stages the city's Pride week festivities celebrating lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer and transexual rights every summer, applied for trademarks for its Dyke March, a march for lesbian rights, and Trans* March, a similar march for trans rights.

But shortly after a dispute over the trademarks became public, Pride Toronto promised to withdraw its trademark application.

Pride Toronto says it first began describing its marches with those names in 2011.

The organization says it only applied for the marks to stop another individual from claiming them.

Pride Vancouver vehemently objected to Pride Toronto's trademark claims. "The phrase Dyke March has been commonly used by radical, fiercely independent, grassroots organizations in Canada and abroad for decades," it said in a statement.

"We strongly believe... they do not have any ethical or moral right or claim to the words 'Dyke March.'"

Pride Vancouver is concerned their Toronto contemporaries will charge them and other Pride groups for the use of the words 'Dyke March'.

Pride Toronto responded by stating they would withdrawal the application for the trademarks.

"Pride Toronto has contacted us and expressed that they will not be seeking the ownership of the "dyke march" trademark," says the Vancouver group.

Both organizations say more information on the trademark dispute will be forthcoming.

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