Walt Disney, Inc. wants to trademark ‘Dia de los Muertos’ (toon)

by Lalo Alcaraz on May 7, 2013 in Cartoons, Cultura, El Now

The Walt Disney Company filed several trademark applications last week with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO.GOV) to secure the name “Dia de Los Muertos” as a service mark.

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Guadalupe Gonzalez May 8, 2013 at 3:10 AM

I am hoping this is a hoax. If it is not, indeed, a hoax, the Walt Disney Corporation has crossed a line that is honored by a noble and cultured people. All in the name of making even more money than it already has. It is said that Walt Disney’s mother was Latina. I do not know that for a fact. But anyone living in this society knows, or should know, the reverence that we Latinos show toward Dia De Los Muertos, the day we honor those whom we loved, who have died. It is a day of respect and traditionally, a day when we are once again united with souls who are ever with us.
We Latinos are a people who are now the majority in this country. You may have noticed the commercials that are, on English language stations, ever so slowly incorporating Latino families, Spanish songs, Hispanic products. We Latinos are in every single socio-economic strata of this society. If we decided, as a bloc, to withdraw from our jobs for one day, this country would implode. If we decided, as a bloc, to refrain from purchasing certain items, or going to certain recreational locales, those items and locales would fold.
I am an attorney, but am unfamiliar with trademark law.
I may not know about trademark law, but I do know one thing: MONEY TALKS. And we, Mi Gente, we have money. We want to keep our little ones happy, we want them to grow up in a good and gentle society. But there is a hard lesson to be learned here. At what cost do we want this for our children? And are we willing to see our heritage ripped off for some cheesy movie that will open in theaters across the country, only for us to hear that it made x amount of money on opening weekend?
I say Disney cannot rape this tradition in this manner, in any manner. No Nos Vamos A Dejar. So, pass by their stores in the mall and do not enter. Do not buy any products put out by their corporation or depicting any of their recognizable characters. Boycott any of the products that sponsor their television and radio station. Do not go to their theme parks. Do not book cruises on their boats. Do not go to their movies. Do not buy or rent any of their products.
MONEY TALKS. How dare they think they can usurp our honorable traditions for their money grubbing interests and stocks and dividends? Ahora, Mi Gente–Ahora tenemos que ensenarles quienes somos.
If not now, when? If not us, who? Think about it. Who is next, our Virgen de Guadalupe?

Smith May 12, 2013 at 1:36 PM

Well said, I have long had a problem with the Disney Money Machine that will use ANY cultural and racial group to make money with it’s cookie cutter movies…story is the same, races are interchanged, the heroines and heros are all drawn the same, just use different colors or cultures. This is a new low for a company that I think it’s founder would abhorr. I am a white Irish American female whose daughter is married to a latino Mexican American and I have a beautiful baby granddaughter. My daughter has appreciated the the Dia de los Muertos for years (althought the brewpub she works in has a brew named that every year at that time, but they do not copyright it!) When do we get the Irish version of The Lttle Mermaid or Pocahontis or the Arabian Nights ….

SheepieTime May 12, 2013 at 11:04 PM

Well said!

Ricky Rollins May 8, 2013 at 7:42 AM

Money Mouse…

yomero May 8, 2013 at 6:57 PM

oh … Guadalupe, as usual the hispanic martyr . there is always something against the poor hispanics, please… get a life.

Simone May 14, 2013 at 6:31 AM

You obviously ignore everything about la Virgen de Guadalupe so please… get a book.

GloriaHernandez May 8, 2013 at 8:38 PM

Yomero. Mentor callate. Do not sell what you do not own

conchitadelaconchata May 8, 2013 at 10:36 PM

Wha happen to yomero? Ya mero you showing us your shortcomings? Look in the mirror, menso. Making more money for el raton, Mickey, by being a vendido? Andale! Get some cajones.

Gabriele May 9, 2013 at 10:56 AM

I am not hispanic but I was upset to first hear about Disney’s plan and then very happy when the filings were rejected.
It’s not those who observe Dia des los Muertos who would have lost, but all those who value their culture or religious observances….once the door was open (if it had been), so many other things could have been misappropriated.
As someone who observes both All Saints and All Souls I give full respect to Dia de los Muertos…and I know people (also not hispanic) who use products (skulls, etc) as a way to enhance their involvement with the church festival.
On the other hand, think of the tongue-in-cheek film that could be made about the dead rising from their graves to march on Disney’s hq to demand their day back…and of course, other people would join the march, perhaps creating another holiday?

Jimmy May 9, 2013 at 5:11 PM

Go Disney whooo. Don’t listen to any of these comments. Just do it go Disney whooo. Half of these people who hated the idea will love it once it comes out.

Guadalupe Gonzalez May 11, 2013 at 11:45 AM

As it turns out, it has been reported that the Disney Corporation has withdrawn it’s laundry list of trademark filings (what was up with the jams and jellies? Since when did we have Dia de Los Muertos PB & J?). Some reports indicate that the international response/blowback caused the withdrawal of those requests.
Whatever the reasons, it is done. For now.

Reality May 12, 2013 at 8:02 AM

Before going off half cocked and taking a ridiculous stance, it might be helpful to actually understand exactly what Disney was trying to trademark here. I’m not defending Disney, I think they blew it on this one. However, they weren’t trying to trademark a holiday or culture, they were trying to trademark items related to a movie they’re putting out. Disney should have thought a bit more about how this could be perceived, and people like Guadalupe should think a bit more before trying to make this into something it isn’t. Use your brains folks, knowledge is power, but ignorance is all I see when things like this happen.

Simone May 14, 2013 at 6:35 AM

The thing is how easy would it be to difference what comes out of the movie and what comes out of the tradition if the movie is based on the tradition? They wanted to trademark the name “Dia de Muertos”. We can start there…

ChristopherBellerose May 12, 2013 at 8:13 AM

I am as far away from being latino as a human could possibly get. I have had to research and learn everything that I know about ‘Dia de los Muertos’ for the art that I have produced from books, internet, and my amazing friends. I have not been personally offended by this.
All of this being said, REALLY Disney!? REALLY!?
Then I thought about it a bit.
Maybe this is a necessary evil. For me, Disney’s epic fail did indeed result in my finding out about Lalo Alcaraz, which is great for me. Maybe this will serve as a doorway for people across the cultural spectrum to learn more about Dia de los Muertos. If anything, a reminder to the corporate world that stepping over certain lines will result in a climate they don’t want to create.

SheepieTime May 12, 2013 at 11:03 PM


deadmau5 May 12, 2013 at 5:48 PM

This comic infringes on my trademark.

Tony May 12, 2013 at 6:57 PM

LMAO deadmou5!!

SheepieTime May 12, 2013 at 11:02 PM


Guadalupe Gonzalez May 13, 2013 at 10:25 PM

Everyone is entitled to his or her opinion. I have read through the Disney application for a panoply of proposed trademark applications. All of them. I am in total agreement with the concept that “Knowledge is Power.” Absolutely. I am glad that many have delved into the observance of “Dia De Los Muertos”. Certainly I support Lalo Alcaraz’ interpretation of Disney’s Corporate actions.
Know this: I have dealt with Disney Corporation’s Legal Department in the course of my legal career. They are not my friends. And I know about their “modus operandi.”

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