During MLS commissioner Don Garber‘s media event to help kick off the 2013 MLS season, he was asked about the ongoing Cascadia Cup trademark issue.
In short, the league applied for the trademark rights to the “Cascadia Cup” without communicating with the fans.
Supporters’ groups in Seattle, Portland and Vancouver in turn put together a Cascadia Cup Council to fight to keep those rights with the fans that started the Pacific Northwest competition before MLS even came to the region.
Here was Garber’s response when asked about the issue Wednesday (it can be seen in the video in the previous post at the 1:02:00 mark):
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“Let me start by saying what I said publicly, and I’ll say it to you and hopefully everybody that’s watching here: We didn’t go about this process right. We’re not perfect. We went and believed that the Cascadia Cup would be protected better if we were able to register that trademark, and we should’ve gone about it differently.
“We should’ve called up those folks that were the caretakers of it and had conversation and figured out how we could mutually achieve our goals, because I think the Cascadia (Cup) Council is interested in protecting the cup trademark, as well. Over the last four weeks … our league president and our attorneys have sat down with the Cascadia Cup Council — that’s represented by about eight lawyers and all members of the supporters’ groups in Seattle, Vancouver and Portland — and have tried to talk about ways that we could satisfy our mutual goals.
“We’ve had two of those calls over the last month. I think the guys are making progress; they haven’t resolved anything. But I’ll say to you, and I want to say this to all the fans: I’m very confident that we will reach an agreement that will make everybody happy, that will take some of the heat off this issue and satisfy some of our concerns, but at the same time honor and provide some reverence and some support for that great trophy and that terrific tournament.
“I’m confident the next time we see each other… I’ll be in Seattle this weekend. Try to pull my aside on Saturday night. I think we’re not going to get it resolved by Saturday, but we’ll get it resolved in a way that everybody would be happy.”