PULLMAN, Wash. --- Washington State University police seized over 700 unlicensed WSU T-shirts and sweatshirts before the WSU vs. UCLA game on Saturday evening.
WSU News said the items had an estimated street value of $15,500.
The officers were working at the request of the WSU Trademark Licensing Office. The merchandise was taken from an unlicensed vendor who was selling items on campus near a popular tailgating area.
Charges will be forwarded to the Whitman County prosecutor’s office for a class C felony for the unlicensed vendor.
“When you buy counterfeit merchandise, you are giving your money to someone who is committing a crime,” said Director of Trademark Licensing for WSU, Alyce Anderson. “Buying unlicensed merchandise also hurts the overall brand equity of the university and takes sales away from the vendors who are invested in following the law and acting as good stewards of the WSU brand," she added.
WSU News said when people are looking to buy WSU merchandise, buyers should look for the following identifiers to make sure the merchandise is officially licensed:
• The “Officially Licensed Collegiate Product” hologram somewhere on the product or tag
• WSU logos and trademarks are shown in a tasteful manner, consistent with the designs and school depictions approved by WSU.
• An intact tag on the clothing item. A torn or missing tag can be evidence of a second-hand garment, one that probably would not meet the quality standards put in place by the WSU.
• The name of the manufacturer on the product, either on a tag, a neck label, or screen-printed directly on the garment.
• The appropriate trademark designations (i.e., TM, ®) next to a specific name or design.
WSU said they do routine game day checks to protect consumers and the WSU brand. WSU asks consumers to purchase officially licensed products to help support the university.