The Chronicle of Higher Education’s news blog reports that the University of Wisconsin is suing Washburn University (in Topeka, Kan.) for trademark infringement over Washburn’s use of a “W” logo that looks similar — in shape, if not in color — to Wisconsin’s “motion W” logo. The logos are part of the schools’ athletic programs.
The logos do look similar, except that Wisconsin’s is red and Washburn’s blue.
UMR used to compete against Washburn, a Division II school (like us), when we were part of the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association. I doubt Washburn (team name: the Ichabods) or Wisconsin (the Badgers) would ever compete in athletics, and probably not for students much, either. But maybe they should settle this dispute with a special bowl game or something. Or maybe, as one commenter on the Chronicle blog put it, “Why would anyone be fighting over a ‘W’ Hasn’t this country had enough of that?”