The Ohio State University filed a trademark for the word “The” earlier this month.

Josh Gerben was quoted by NBC News discussing the filing and chances of whether it gets registered:

Application No. 88571984, filed with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Thursday, was discovered and publicized Tuesday by Josh Gerben, a prominent trademark lawyer in Washington.

“For a trademark to be registered for a brand of clothing, the trademark “must be used in a trademarked fashion,” […] “In other words, it has to be used on tagging or labeling for the products.”

“In this case, just putting the word ‘the’ on the front of a hat or on the front of a shirt is not sufficient trademark use,”.

 

 

Source: Johnson, A.  “‘The’ Ohio State University wants to trademark the word ‘THE'”.  NBCNews.com.  August 13 2019