Photo of Alison Quinn

The ALS Association has filed two trademark applications with the US Patent and Trademark Office for "ice bucket challenge" and "ALS ice bucket challenge" for the purposes of charitable fundraising.   In recent weeks there has been a social media storm of people carrying out the challenge by pouring a bucket of iced water over their heads and making a donation to the ALS Association.

The ALS Association are claiming ownership of the phrases, despite not creating the idea. Permission from the original creators was given to the ALS Association prior to the registrations being made. Other charitable organisations have also benefited from donations resulting from ice bucket challenges. If the applications are granted the ALS Association could stop other charities from benefiting from the challenge but this seems like an unlikely agenda. 

The trademarks have yet to be granted and I’m still waiting to be nominated…