Blog: Forever 21 also offering string of 'Navajo' products
Posted: Friday, November 4, 2011
"Last month, Urban Outfitters drew popular ire — and threats of legal action from the Navajo Nation — for advertising such products as the "Navajo Flask" and the "Navajo Hipster Panty." The tribe owns a variety of trademarks on the term "Navajo," including one covering clothing — meaning that legally speaking, calling a non-Navajo-made product "Navajo" is as dodgy as calling a non-Chanel-made product "Chanel."
Presumably to avoid that potential liability, Urban Outfitters recently changed the names of all 21 of the products it had been calling "Navajo," including the panties, the flask, the "Navajo Feather Earrings" and the "Navajo Nations Crew Pullover." Those products are still available, they're just called the "Printed Flask" and the "Printed Hipster Panties." The problem, in the eyes of intellectual property law, wasn't the arguable appropriation of Native American patterns or designs, it was the unauthorized use of a registered trademark.
But fellow mass-market retailer Forever 21 doesn't seem to share Urban Outfitters' concern. While a search for "Navajo" on its website turns up no results, a little digging reveals at least a half-dozen items that have the Navajo trademark in the title. That includes the "Navajo & Lace Hipster" — that's right, not one but two international chains sold "Navajo" underwear for fall — the "Navajo Tunic" and the "Navajo Handbag" in the U.S. online store."
Get the Story:
Forever 21 Didn’t Get The Navajo Memo
Blog: Forever 21 sells necklace with 'Native
(11/1) Editorial: Navajo goods should be made by Navajo
(10/24) Colorlines: Corporations pimping other cultures
(10/21) Navajo Nation hails
action by Urban Outfitters on products
(10/20) ICT: Urban Outfitters erases 'Navajo' name from
(10/19) Sasha Houston Brown:
Corporations rip off tribal property
(10/18) Navajo Nation sent trademark letter to Urban
Outfitters in June
Urban Outfitters is obsessed with 'Navajo' fashions
(10/11) Living: Asking Navajos about the neo-Navajo trend
Join the Conversation