Use of the University’s Trademarks

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University Policy Number 1130


Responsible Office:

Policy Procedure:

The George Mason University Brand Profile

George Mason University Trademark Licensing

Related Law & Policy:

15 USC §1051 et seq. (Trademark Act of 1946 as amended)

VA Code §59.1-92.1 et seq.

University Policy 1111, University Publication and Printing Function

I.                   SCOPE.

This Policy governs the use of the University’s Trademarks. The University’s goals are to protect its trademarks and strengthen its corporate brand and marketing reach.

II.                POLICY

The Rector and Visitors of George Mason University own all of the Trademarks which relate to or have become associated with George Mason University (“Mason” or “University”).  The University has contracted a licensing agent, IMG College Licensing, to assist the University in marketing and managing the use of its Trademarks on merchandise.

The University has registered many of its Trademarks with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.  The University’s Auxiliary Enterprises administers the Trademark licensing program and use of Trademarks on merchandise.  The University’s Communications and Marketing Office oversees the direction of the University’s visual identity, marketing, and Trademark use.  Creative Services provides guidance for the University’s visual identity and approves graphic designs for departments.  Student Involvement provides guidance and approves graphic designs of student organizations.

The Office of Communications and Marketing is responsible for the review, approval, and licensing of Trademarks.  Office of University Counsel maintains the official inventory of federally registered trademarks and is responsible for registering new approved Trademarks.

III.             DEFINITIONS

Trademark means any word, name, symbol, or device, or any combination thereof used to identify and distinguish goods from those manufactured or sold by others and to indicate the source of the goods. For the purpose of this policy, the term Trademark includes federally registered and common law trademarks, trade names, service marks, logos, insignia, indicia, emblems, symbols, identifying marks, marks, names, nicknames, seals, and mascots.


University departments, colleges, organizations, and other internal units must use the Trademarks of the University in accordance with guidelines established by Creative Services and Intercollegiate Athletics.  Student organizations must obtain graphic design approval from Student Involvement.  Businesses, vendors, and community partners must obtain approval from Auxiliary Enterprises to use the University’s Trademarks on any products.  Users of the University’s Trademarks shall adhere to the standards of quality in materials, design, workmanship, use, advertising and promotion as set forth in the University’s Visual Identity Guide, or as dictated by the University.  Users of the Trademarks shall comply with any updates or changes by the University with respect to the style, appearance and manner of use and placement of the Trademarks.  Authorized users of the Trademarks shall not adopt or use, without the express and prior written consent of the University, any variation of the Trademarks.

Use or reproduction of any Trademarks by external entities is prohibited without the express approval and licensing by the University.  If approval is given, a license agreement must be executed.

All products bearing a Trademark of the University must be manufactured by a vendor licensed through the University’s licensing agent, unless otherwise approved in writing by Auxiliary Enterprises.  Only Mason’s licensees are authorized to manufacture and distribute all goods and merchandise bearing the Trademarks of Mason.  Additionally, all vendors must maintain membership with the Fair Labor Association (FLA) and pay royalties for use of Trademarks, unless otherwise exempted in writing by Auxiliary Enterprises.

The University’s Trademarks will not be used in any manner tending to diminish the reputation and image of the University.  The University’s Trademarks are not to be used in any way that discriminates or implies discrimination against any persons based on any prohibited basis under Virginia or federal law, or that would violate the University’s anti-discrimination policies.


This Policy will become effective upon the date of approval by the Senior Vice President for Administration and Finance and the Provost and Executive Vice President. This Policy will be reviewed periodically by the Office of University Counsel and Auxiliary Enterprises.



___________/S_______________                        _____________/S___________________
Senior Vice President for                                        Provost and Executive Vice President

Administration and Finance


Originally Approved 4/11/2013

Revised  4/15/2013

Revision Approved 10/13/14

Reviewed 9/23/16

Revision Approved 10/9/2017