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Wednesday, 21 April 2004


Ananova cites the Herald Sun as reporting that Andre van der Linden, an Australian evangelical Christian, is suing the Channel 7 TV channel after it ran an episode of Prime Suspect in which the words "Jesus Christ" were used as an exclamation. Van der Linden, of Waranga (northern Victoria) is suing because he says such use of the name is insulting and disrespectful to Christians: "It is high time that television stations like yours be called to account for your defamation of the name Jesus Christ, a practice that insults hundreds of thousands of Christian believers". He adds that blasphemous words should be "bleeped out". Channel 7 proposes to defend the legal action, maintaining that the British-made TV show is a realistic reflection of day-to-day life.

JESUS has been registered in the Benelux countries, Austria, France, Italy and Spain but not (so far) in Germany, Switzerland, China, Hungary or Ireland.

The IPKat notes that Basic Trademark's application to register JESUS in the UK as a trade mark for clothing and footwear was refused last year but is currently under appeal. Although the reason for refusing registration is that the use of JESUS is deemed to be morally offensive to the public (as Mr van der Linden maintains), refusal of registration does not mean that the word can't be used for morally offensive activities such as identifying a brand of jeans.

More on naughty words here, here, here and here
Swearing: Jesus' view
Can't find God? Visit the UK Trade Marks Registry here and here

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