Trademarks, the First Amendment & The Slants

Feb 15, 2023 | News & Events,

Trademarks, the First Amendment & The Slants

Monday, March 6 at 4:00 p.m.
Saint Louis University School of Law, 100 N. Tucker, Room 1130
Co-sponsored by Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Saint Louis University School of Law and St. Louis Volunteer Lawyers and Accountant for the Arts (VLAA)

Join musician and activist Simon Tam, Mark Sableman of Thompson Coburn, and VLAA Board President Matt Minder of Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner for a conversation about the legal journey of Simon’s band, The Slants. This Asian American dance rock band took a fight for the right to trademark their band name all the way to the Supreme Court, sparking a powerful story about free speech – a story that is now the focus of a world premiere opera in St. Louis. One hour of Missouri CLE credit will be available. A reception in the Louis W. Riethmann, Jr., Pavilion (12th Floor) will follow the program.

Free and open to the public but registration is required.

About Simon Tam
Simon Tam is an author, musician, activist, and self-proclaimed troublemaker. Best known as the founder and bassist of The Slants, the world’s first and only all-Asian American dance rock band, Simon approaches arts and activism with radical optimism and compassion. In 2017, he won a landmark case at the U.S. Supreme Court, unanimously, helping to expand civil liberties for marginalized groups. His work has been highlighted in over 3,000 media features across over 150 countries, including Rolling StoneTIMENPRBBC, and the New York Times.

Tam will be in St. Louis in March for the world-premiere to his 20-minute opera, Slanted: An American Opera, which was commissioned by Opera Theatre of Saint Louis as part of its New Works Collective initiative. Read more here.

About Mark Sableman
Mark Sableman, Thompson Coburn, is an intellectual property, media, and information technology law attorney. He is the author of More Speech, Not Less: Communications Law in the Information Age and many law journal articles and book chapters. A longtime VLAA volunteer and former board president, Mark took the lead in VLAA’s efforts to support the free speech rights of David Pulphus, the young St. Louis artist whose painting was removed from the U.S. Capitol in 2018.

About Matt Minder
Matt Minder, Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner, is VLAA’s board president. His practice encompasses all aspects of the adoption, prosecution, enforcement, and exploitation of trademarks and copyrights. In addition to advising clients on the selection and availability of trademarks and service marks, and in registering those marks with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, he works with foreign counsel on global brand protection and enforcement.