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    Chinese Firm Registers Jeremy Lin Trademark Without Star's Permission

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    NTDTelevision

    by NTDTelevision

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    Jeremy Lin is the hottest new star of the NBA. The Taiwanese-American shot to global fame with the New York Knicks in 2011. But some of this recognition in China may be unwanted. A Chinese sports company took a gamble and registered Lin's name as a trademark about a year before he shot to stardom. Now the company is churning out Jeremy Lin branded basketballs, without the star's permission.

    It gives a new meaning to the word "Linsanity." A basketball manufacturer in China registers Asian-American NBA star Jeremy Lin's name as a trademark, without his knowledge—for just 700 dollars.

    The Wuxi Risheng Sports Utility Co discovered Lin before he shot to fame with the New York Knicks.

    [...]

    In July 2010 the company registered variations on Lin's Chinese name, "Lin Shuhao," and "Jeremy S.H.L." as trademarks in China.

    [...]

    But in 2011 Lin shot to stardom and "Linsanity,"—a term Lin himself is applying for trade mark—was born.

    [...]

    This use of Lin's name in China will no doubt anger Nike, Lin's official coorperate partner.

    Nike signed a contract with Lin in 2010, and is launching Jeremy Lin shoes and a "Linsanity" line of clothing.

    Horace Lam, a Beijing based intellectual property lawyer, says that according to China's copyright laws, what Risheng sports is doing is legal.

    [...]

    If Lin or Nike want to buy the rights from Risheng sports to use Lin's Chinese name in China, they may have to pay a hefty sum.

    This isn't the first time an NBA star has found a Chinese company using his name without permission.

    Micheal Jordan recently discovered a Chinese company trading under the Chinese transliteration of his name—Qiaodan.

    Qiaodan sports owns over five thousand stores across China, all trading under that name.

    [...]

    So far Lin has not commented on his trademark problems in China.