Home > News > ‘Porno Jesus’ Can’t Be Trademarked, Appeals Board Rules • Bookmark   • Newsletters   • Register Search Options


‘Porno Jesus’ Can’t Be Trademarked, Appeals Board Rules

‘Porno Jesus’ Can’t Be Trademarked, Appeals Board Rules
Get XBIZ News
Apr 1, 2015 10:19 AM PDT    Text size: 

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has put its foot down on an entrepreneur’s plan to trademark the name "Porno Jesus" for a line of adult entertainment products.

Last month, the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board ruled that a trademark-examining attorney was correct in refusing to register the mark, which was to be used in various kinds of adult entertainment, including DVDs, photography and videos.

The "Porno Jesus" mark, according to the attorney’s initial ruling, "consists of or comprises immoral or scandalous matter" and "includes matter which may disparage or bring into contempt or disrepute persons, institutions, beliefs or national symbols.”

The applicant for the "Porno Jesus" mark, Matthew Beck, sought a reversal of the attorney’s decision, arguing that there have been recent “shifting views among Christians on issues including pornography” and that other trademark registrations, including “Hookers for Jesus” and “Redneck Jesus” have been allowed.

Beck’s counsel even submitted as evidence a screenshot of a website devoted to disseminating and supporting Christian pornography, and offering contemporary pornographic video productions marketed toward Christians.

But the appeals board ruled against Beck, stating that because the mark links Jesus with pornography, it may disparage Christian Americans.

"The plain meaning of the terms comprising the mark Porno Jesus, which links Jesus with pornography, supports a finding that the mark may disparage Christian-Americans," Judge Peter Cataldo wrote for the board.

"The connection between Jesus and pornographic or sexually explicit materials engendered by the mark is emphasized in this case inasmuch as the identification of goods indicates that applicant intends to use his mark in connection with sexually explicit materials," he wrote.
"Applicant's argument that other potentially disparaging or otherwise offensive marks consisting in part of the word Jesus have been registered cannot assist him in traversing a refusal to register a disparaging term. It is well-established that even if marks in prior registrations have some characteristics similar to applicant's mark, the USPTO's allowance of such prior registrations does not bind the board."

Adult industry attorney Gregory Piccionelli discusses the issues surrounding immoral and scandalous trademarks in April’s edition of XBIZ World.

More ways to get XBIZ News:  RSS Feeds  |  E-Newsletters  |  Desktop Widget  |  Mobile
Looking for porn star news and behind-the-scene videos? Check out XFANZ.com !


Data Privacy Is Tightening Up in the E.U.

Have you begun preparing for GDPR? If you are like most, you haven’t even heard of GDPR, but also if you are like most, it is going to affect your business, starting May 25, 2018. The GDPR, or General... More »

Could Adult Content Be Banned?

Earlier this month, I met with the Free Speech Coalition’s board of directors for our annual review. Despite the headwinds our industry faces, politically and economically, we are, as an organization,... More »

Cutting Costs in the Spirit of Entrepreneurship

Adult website owners are comprised of two groups: One is comfortable giving up 30-50 percent of their site’s gross sales revenue (aka profit) in exchange for software, hosting and services despite... More »
Stay informed of the latest industry developments. Get XBIZ newsletters delivered to your inbox. Subscribe today!
Enter email address:

* To manage existing subscriptions click here.

Submit your press release to
multiple news outlets with 1 click.
Subscribe to RSS news feeds or
add free content to your website.
Access XBIZ news and articles
with your mobile device.
Access the latest issues of the industry's leading trade publications in digital form. View online or download for offline viewing.


XBIZ Retreat

May 30 - Jun 03
Miami, Florida

XBIZ Miami 2017

May 30 - Jun 02
Miami, Florida

XShow 18+ 2017

Jun 01 - Jun 03
Moscow, Russia

Cam Summit

Jun 02 - Jun 04
Lloret de Mar, Spain
Everyday thousands of business professionals browse XBIZ's industry directory for quality products and services. Not listed yet? Your company could be losing potential new business. Submit your company today!
Use XBIZ RSS feeds to stay informed of the latest industry developments or as a content syndication tool for your website!