ALS group drops attempt to trademark “ice bucket challenge”

The retreat came after Mike Masnick at TechDirt and Joe Mullin at ArsTechnica pointed out some of the reasons the attempt might be problematic, among them that the challenge had been used widely by other charities before it caught on in August in connection with ALS.


  • It’s also hard to see what the benefit would be if they did obtain the trademark. Do they really expect to sell associated merchandise that they wouldn’t sell just because people support their cause? The only way I can see of monetizing the trademark would be to charge other charities, which would, I think, make them wildly unpopular.

  • I can imagine that if they got this as a trademark, they could turn around and ensure its freely available, kind of like Volvo with the three-point seat belt. Notch at doesn’t seem real likely, but it would be a benefit.