Trademark Policy

 

General  |  Royalties  |  Use Limitations  |  Congratulatory Use  |  Corporate Sponsors  |  Student Organization Websites

 

To fully protect The University of Texas System trademarks so that they remain valuable assets for years to come, the system registers the marks and manages them through licensing. These two steps would not be sufficient, however, if system licensed the marks for any and every proposed use. For example, some uses would harm the reputation that the marks represent. In other cases, the nature of goods and services may pose such significant legal risks that they should not be licensed, and some uses may potentially harm the marks unless they are carefully controlled. To protect its marks, system has developed the following use restrictions:

 

General

Only an officially licensed vendor may produce merchandise bearing UT System trademarks. “Officially licensed vendors” and “store vendors” or other university vendors may not always be the same. For a current list of officially licensed vendors, contact the Office of Trademark Licensing or go to the Forms & Lists page to download.

Any trademark that identifies or is associated with the UT System outside of products/merchandise as described above may not be used without prior expressed written permission from the Office of Trademark Licensing. To obtain this permission, submit a written request via email (preferable) to the Office of Trademark Licensing at trademarks@utexas.edu or fax (512-232-7080.) Questions have been developed to assist you with providing pertinent information so that your request can be considered. For internal requests on products bearing trademarks for UT Austin, log on to the Internal Campus Request Portal.  For other UT System Institutions, complete a Student and Internal Request Form on the Forms & Lists Page.

We are committed to the concept that all items incorporating UT trademarks (including names of departments and any recognized club and organization affiliated with UT System or its institutions) are manufactured by companies whose labor policies ensure that their employees are safe from abusive labor practices. The Office of Trademark Licensing in connection with our licensing agents [Collegiate Licensing Company (CLC), Strategic Marketing Affiliates(SMA), the Fair Labor Association (FLA) as well as the Workers Rights Consortium (WRC)] have adopted Labor Code standards that require licensees to disclose the locations of the factories it owns or contracts with and authorize announced and unannounced inspections/monitoring of the factories.

Merchandise bearing UT trademarks and produced without proper written authorization may be considered counterfeit or infringing and subject to all available legal remedies, including, but not limited to, seizure of the merchandise.

 

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Royalties

General guidelines have been set up to determine if a request is royalty or non-royalty bearing. That being said, each request is reviewed on a case-by-case basis to ensure that the trademark policies are implemented in a consistent manner. These guidelines are, but not limited to the following:

  • Any item, including those sold to a university-owned entity are generally subject to royalty fees if a UT trademark is used and the product/merchandise is for resale.

  • The inclusion of a corporate name or “sponsor” may require the payment of royalties. This is usually the case with promotional, corporate sponsored items.

  • There are times when an item being given away will be royalty bearing. This is when the design is considered “generic” (ie: not dept, program, or event specific).

Campus entities are generally exempt from royalty payments if merchandise is for internal use or the product/merchandise is a give-away item. However, if the design is considered “generic” (i.e. not department, program or event specific), royalties may be charged. These guidelines may vary slightly across UT System institutions.

 

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Use Limitations

System marks requested for the following uses are limited and described in the upcoming highlighted sections. As always, prior written approval from the Office of Trademark Licensing for permission to use marks in the following ways:

Publications

Use of trademarks/logos on the cover or within the text of a magazine when there is an article about the university, its officers, students, or alumni.

Sports publications approved by the institutional chief administrative officer or designee, providing the publisher agrees to include the following disclaimer in the publication:
"Not an official publication of The University of Texas (@ institution)".

Literary works that generally provide historical information about and promote the goodwill of the UT System or component institution. System marks may be licensed for such use by permission letter after review by the appropriate institutional officers.

 

Internal publications that incorporate UT trademarks should conform to each component institutions guidelines.

Advertisements

System marks may be used in the following kinds of advertising, so long as the uses also conform to the special requirements of the Office of General Counsel contained in guidelines, checklists and interactive electronic forms applicable in each case. These are designed to help component institutions conform their agreements to standard expectations regarding both the form and substance of the agreements and the approval of ad copy and layout design.

A commercial entity that is a “licensee” of the university may utilize certain marks in an ad but only when there is an underlying related product, which is licensed and only when the licensed product is being advertised.

Those entities not licensed may utilize certain marks in ads that are of an informational, congratulatory or in team spirit nature (academic/athletic achievements) as determined by the trademark office. These ads may not contain solicitation for the sale of their products or services but the company name/logo may appear.

Corporate advertisements that utilize appropriate system trademarks in official programs sold or distributed at Intercollegiate Athletic events, pursuant to the terms of an advertising agreement.

Promotional activities utilizing appropriate system trademarks, pursuant to the terms of a sponsor/promotional license agreement. Promotional activities are activities such as advertising or offering promotional products to further the growth, development, acceptance and/or sale of goods or services.

For companies that have done work for the university, the company may list the component name with other customers. These companies may include photographs of the actual work area provided that it is generic to the location.

 

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Congratulatory Ad/Banner Use

Unless licensed by the university, the advertiser may not use symbols, such as the Tower design, the Longhorn Silhouette, the Hook ’em hand sign, etc.

Examples of phrases that are permissible:

Congratulations on a great season

Congratulations Horns, or Texas, or Texas Longhorns, or Longhorns, etc.

Good Luck Horns, or Texas, or Texas Football, etc.

Go Horns

Wishing the Horns a great game

Advertisers must avoid words such as support, supporter, partner, brought to you by, sponsor or sponsorship. Furthermore, references such as “ABC Company and the Longhorns, what a great season” are not permitted. Advertisers may not use “Live the Dream” without special permission by the university.

All artwork/requests must be submitted through the Office of Trademark Licensing for approval prior to moving forward.

 

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Corporate Sponsors

If you have a corporate sponsor for an event, you may acknowledge the corporate entity for its support, providing there is no logo usage and no mention of products or services of that corporate entity. For example, “This mailing made possible by _______” or similar statement may be used. The company name should be in the same size, color, and typeface as the rest of the statement. 

 

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Student Organization Websites

Student organizations that represent themselves on the Internet should follow the guidelines here on this sample site when creating their sites. Click here for an image that illustrates the correct and incorrect website layout which can be used as a guide in creating compliant organizational websites.

 

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