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Trademarking Phrases: SDSU’s Aztec Shops Laying Claim To ‘I Believe That We Will Win!’

"I Believe That We Will Win!"

San Diego State University's student cheering section chanting "I Believe That We Will Win!" before an Aztec Men's basketball game.

Trademarking Phrases: SDSU's Aztec Shops Laying Claim To 'I Believe That We Will Win!'


Art Neill, Founder & executive director of New Media Rights, a program of California Western School of Law that provides free and low cost legal assistance to creators, tech startups and Internet users. He also teaches Internet & social media law and an Internet, media and intellectual property focused clinic at California Western.


Photo credit: Atzec Shops, Ltd.

A T-shirt emblazoned with the chant, "I Believe That We Will Win!" is sold by Atzec Shops Ltd., a nonprofit operating at San Diego State University.

Aztec Shops, Ltd., a nonprofit corporation at San Diego State University, has filed to trademark the phrase, "I Believe That We Will Win!," which it has printed on T-shirts, caps and sweatshirts.

The only trouble is lots of other people use this phrase. It was heard worldwide during the World Cup and — in fact — the Aztec's basketball team fans were not the first to use it.. The chant reportedly originated at the United States Naval Academy back in the 1990s.

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