It’s not just corporations that have to worry about protecting the authenticity of their brand. It’s a problem for biker gangs too.
Consider the International Chapter of the Vagos Outlaw Motorcycle Gang (Vagos), of southern California (slogan: ‘We Give What We Get’). To protect themselves against FBI infiltrators, they have trademarked their ‘cuts’, the patches which only bona fide members are allowed to wear. This is what one looks like. And this is the patch of the FBI.
Or, at least, that is what the patches used to look like. Now they have a little copyright symbol just underneath the wheel. As you can see here.
This gives the Vagos OMG exclusive rights to the patch. No one—including undercover FBI agents—will be able to wear the patch without being thoroughly vetted by the Vagos leadership. Anyone wearing a fake logo, i.e., a non-copyrighted patch, ‘may be placing themselves in danger’.
This story comes courtesy of ‘FBI Motorcyle Gang Trademarks Logo to Prevent Undercover Infiltration‘. Public Intelligence, April 17th, 2012.