Honey Badger Don’t Care, But the Legal Community Does

Balancing Trademark Fair Use with the Rights of Trademark Owners

“Society has largely come to regard trademarks as a threat to free speech—while forgetting that it is equally possible for free speech to threaten trademarks.” – Sara Gold

It may be true that the ‘honey badger don’t care’ about your birthday, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that a greeting card company can lift the trademarked phrase without permission. These greeting cards sparked quite the spirited debate within the trademark community—was the cards’ use of the trademarked phrase an infringement, or First Amendment-protected art?  This article, which won the Ladas Memorial Award from the International Trademark Association, explores the Honey Badger trademark dispute and its implications for the balance between trademark enforcement and First Amendment exceptions.


Citation: Sara Gold, Honey Badger Don’t Care, but the Legal Community Does, 19 Wake Forest J. of Bus. & Intell. Prop. Law 381 (2019).

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