Stanford reverses decision to block CR logo featuring US flag

Stanford University has announced that it will reconsider its trademark policy after rejecting a College Republicans T-shirt logo design because it featured parts of the American flag. 

In a statement to Campus Reform, a university spokesperson said that Stanford “has decided to reconsider its current policy addressing association of the Stanford name/logo with flags” and allow the group to use the previously-rejected design of the new logo.  

“This specific policy is part of a broader policy that is appropriately intended to avoid associating the Stanford name/logo with specific political perspectives,” the official added. “We now recognize that the specific policy was framed in an overly restrictive manner.”

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The university originally rejected the student group’s proposed logo in late February, arguing that the design violates the guidelines of private school’s trademark office, The College Fix reported

“Stanford does not approve the use of the American (or other flag on product also featuring our trademarks (including the Stanford name),” a Stanford trademark licensing official told the College Republicans in an email. 

“We can approve red/white/blue themed product but cannot approve this design which features altered version of the flag in the background of the design, and within the initials for the organization name,” the official added. 

The school’s trademark guide, however, does not clearly mention any restrictions related to national flags, Fox News reported.

Despite rejecting the new logo, the university noted that the club’s previous design was permissible, and that the trademark office could approve it. 

“I note you feature a different design on your website,” the official said in the email at the time. “We would be able to approve that design on product.”

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In a statement to Fox News, the Stanford College Republicans argued that “the idea that flags are off limits ridiculous,” stressing that “the American flag shouldn’t be off limits.”

A university spokesperson told Campus Reform that based on its review of the policy, “Stanford College Republicans is welcome to use the images of the U.S. flag reflected in the current design of its logos,” adding that administrators “will also be considering Stanford’s overarching policy on use of flags over the coming weeks.”

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