July 19th, 2005 | Oddments
The folks at the National Center for Lesbian Rights sent us a copy of the 2004 decision denying Dykes on Bikes’ motion for reconsideration. Apparently, the US Patent and Trademark office has concluded that the word dyke is “considered vulgar, offensive and/or disparaging” and is therefore unacceptable as part of a trademark. For proof, they attached some links to online dictionaries, and to a list of Spanish to English slang that includes the word “dyke.” The list also tells you how to say lots of other useful things in Spanish, such as “cunt,” “asslicker” and “69.” So bizarre that this is part of a government document!
But did anybody think to check Google? Type in the word dyke and this is what you get. The first thing on there is a site called Classic Dykes, “a cybernetwork for lesbians in midlife and beyond.” The other links relating to lesbians on the first page are all gay sites, like one for the Dynamo Dykes volleyball team in the UK. And the sponsor ads that pop up are all personals ads for people seeking “womyn” like them. Presumably, womyn who call themselves dykes.
Google is a much more credible arbiter than some wackjob list of translations.