The Democratic National Committee has officially cut ties with Donald Trump parody mascot “Donald Ducks,” after the mascot raised trademark infringement issues.
The Wall Street Journal’s Law Blog confirmed the committee axed the project. A spokesman would not confirm why the DNC severed ties with the duck mascot.
The DNC deployed “Donald Ducks” to heckle the candidate for failing to release his tax returns. The mascot made unwelcome appearances at Trump rallies, brandishing signs jeering the candidate. The mascot also staked out Trump Tower in New York City on Thursday, Aug. 18, where he posed for pictures.
Given the mascots startling resemblance to iconic Disney character Donald Duck, some experts speculated that the DNC was unlawfully infringing on a Disney trademark. (RELATED: Kate Upton Doubles Down On Criticism Of NFL Players Protesting National Anthem)
Walt Disney Corp. also enjoys its own unique status in federal copyright law, which renders practically all Disney creations after 1922 out of the public domain.
The company is notoriously protective of its trademarks, maintaining a full-time anti-piracy task force to police use of its titles and characters. Nor is the company gun-shy, having earned a reputation for being extremely litigious; it has even sued resellers peddling tickets to its own theme parks for using trademarked Disney characters in their promotions. Use of pictures of Disney icons, including Cinderella’s castle, are also extensively protected, with exceptions for individuals who take photos in connection with vacations.
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