Trademark and Licensing Policy
Subject: Governance and Organization
Policy: Trademark and Licensing
Effective Date: May 19, 2003
Revised Date: April 10, 2012
- Table of Contents
- 100.00 Introduction and Purpose
- 200.00 Policy
- 300.00 Registered and Protected Trademarks
- 400.00 Procedures
- 500.00 Licensing and Royalties
- 600.00 Exemptions
100.00 Introduction and Purpose
Montana State University has registered or otherwise protected the names, logos, symbols, indicia, insignia, trade names, service marks, and trademarks (collectively "Trademarks") of the University and its programs. The University has delegated the responsibility for maintaining, managing and licensing University trademarks to University Communications. University Communications may further delegate authority to maintain and manage trademarks of University programs to the program Directors upon request. All trademark licenses for trademarks used by any university program must be approved by University Communications.
The mission and
purpose of the Trademark Policy is to:
(1) ensure proper control and
use of Trademarks that have come to be associated with Montana State University,
protect all University Trademarks from unauthorized uses, and facilitate the
process of granting authorization for legitimate internal and third party use of
(2) ensure that the University
secures a legitimate and reasonable royalty for the use of its Trademarks,
generate revenue for the University for scholarships and University programs;
(3) promote the University in a consistent and uniform manner to protect the University's reputation, name and image by permitting only appropriate uses and assuring that only quality products bear the University's Trademarks, and protect the consumer from inferior products bearing University Trademarks.
1. The use of any trademark
that identifies, or is associated with, Montana State University may not be used
without the prior expressed written authorization of Montana State University.
Products bearing those Trademarks and distributed for resale or other
promotional purposes are subject to the licensing requirements of this Policy.
2. Only an Officially
Licensed Vendor may produce merchandise bearing the Montana State University
Trademarks. For a current list of Officially Licensed Vendors contact
3. The University has entered
into an agreement with the Collegiate Licensing Company (CLC) as its exclusive
Licensing Agent. CLC negotiates and administers licenses with manufacturers that
wish to trade upon the University name and ensure that all uses of the
University name are professional, tasteful, of a quality that reflects
positively on the institution, and are manufactured under fair labor conditions. CLC
ensures that all manufacturers sign a labor code of conduct. For additional information
inappropriate uses of Trademarks, contact Communictions and Public Affairs.
4. The Trademarks of the
University will not be used in the promotion of weapons, of alcohol, tobacco, or
"recreational" drug products. The University reserves the right to prohibit
other uses which it deems inappropriate as being inconsistent with the image and
mission of an educational institution.
5. Merchandise bearing
University Trademarks and produced without proper written University
authorization may be considered counterfeit or infringing and subject to all
available legal remedies, including, but not limited to, seizure of the
6. Departments of the
University designing merchandise to bear a University Trademark must secure
prior approval, in writing, from the Licensing Director.
7. Departments and recognized
student clubs and organizations may use certain logos for official business.
Departments and recognized student clubs and department organizations who wish
to design or create new Trademarks for their department club or organization
must coordinate their effort with University Communications. Questions regarding such
use should be directed to University Communications. Departments requesting authorization
use within official University publications, letterhead, and business cards
should direct their requests to Creative Services (406-994-5128).
300.00 Registered and Protected Trademarks
1. The University has registered its marks nationally and in the state of
Montana. This ensures protection of the
integrity and identity of the University while simultaneously allowing the
collection of royalties through the licensing program. Please refer to
Appendix A for a listing of registered trademark logos and verbiage.
2. All other names, symbols,
initials, or graphic designs that refer to Montana State University are
protected by U.S. and state common law.
3. Trademarks are to be used
only in the specific manner approved in writing by the University, together with
the appropriate Trademark designation, and may not be otherwise altered without
the express written authorization of University Communications.
1. All products bearing the
Montana State University's Trademarks must be approved and licensed as specified
by this Policy. Resale items will generally be subject to the current standard
royalty rate established by the University.
2. Promotional or "premium"
items, regardless of distribution points, are also subject to licensing
requirements. Royalties will be determined based upon the scope of the promotion
and other factors considered appropriate by the University.
3. Institutional marketing
materials produced by the University for official University business shall meet
the criteria established by the University's
Graphic Identity and Branding Policy. Other promotional items, regardless of
production, method or source of distribution, are subject to the approval policy
process in this Policy.
4. Companies and individuals
wishing to extend congratulatory messages (or statements of support) who do not
meet the criteria of E. 2.a-c below, are authorized to use prescribed
trademarked verbiage (e.g. Go Cats or Congratulations Bobcats). Such messages
should not include trademarked logos and must be clearly separate from the sale or
promotion of any products.
500.00 Licensing and Royalties
1. Any person, business, or
organization desiring to use the University's Trademark in any manner and for
any purpose must be licensed to do so. The University has arranged for licenses
to be issued by the Collegiate Licensing Company on the University's behalf.
2. The University generally
allows for three types of licenses to be issued, but may create new licensing
arrangements as needed.
A. Traditional Retail: for the
production of emblematic merchandise which will be sold by the Licenses to
B. Internal Use: issued to a
company whose sole use of the University's Trademarks is in response to a
production request by a department (non-retail) or recognized campus club or
organization for internal use. Licensees are not authorized to sell any products
for traditional retail sales.
C. Promotional Use: use of
University Trademarks for an approved limited duration commercial use.
3. A product is generally
subject to royalty fees if a University Trademark is utilized AND:
the product is for resale; or
the product promotes a specific event; or
the name, mark or logo of a third
party is used in conjunction or in association with the Trademark.
4. These guidelines are
usually sufficient in determining royalty/non-royalty. However, each submission
shall be reviewed individually to make sure all aspects of the situation are
taken into consideration. Royalty waivers generally apply only to internal use
by University departments and recognized campus clubs and organizations creating
products that are not for resale.
1. Departments of the University and recognized clubs and organizations, are also required to purchase emblematic merchandise from "Officially Licensed Vendors." Receiving authorization for a design or to utilize a Trademark does not constitute approval to manufacture a particular product. The product must be manufactured by, and purchased from, an "Officially Licensed Vendor." A list of current local licensees is attached in Appendix B.
2. All departments of the
University, recognized campus clubs and organizations, individuals, and
companies are required to obtain approval from University Communications prior to
producing, or arranging for production of, any product that utilizes the
University's Trademarks, regardless of use or method of distribution, except as
otherwise authorized under paragraph B.7. above.
For further information contact:
Montana State University
PO Box 172220
Bozeman, MT 59717