A fish called Tim Winton: scientists name new species after novelist

4915006032_03aedbb6f2_mAustralian author Tim Winton has received several national and international awards for his literary scholarship. Along with being shortlisted for the coveted Man Booker Prize, he has received the prestigious Miles Franklin Award and the Centenary Medal for service to the literature.

At the start of 2016, Mr. Winton was able to add another rather unusual accolade to his long-list of accomplishments: a newly identified species of fish will now carry the Western Australian writer’s personal name. According to the Guardian, wildlife specialists involved in the onomastic project selected Winton for this honorific to recognize his continuing efforts to protect aquatic flora and fauna Down Under.

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Nationwide publishes Wacky Pet Names of 2015

14235056501_d30e040c10_mLooking for a name for your new feline family member? How about “Sir Nigel Meowmittens of Oscelot Court”, “Sophistikitty”, or “Cornelius McPudness Vandercat”? All of these fanciful feline names are taken from the list of real-life monikers featured on Nationwide’s year-end list of Wacky Pet Names.

Ruling Could Help Washington Redskins in Trademark Case

14135683605_a5650500d5_mJust days before the Winter Holidays, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, D.C. declared that the first Amendment “forbids government regulators to deny registration [of trademark ] because they find the speech is likely to offend others”. This ruling came in response to a petition by an Asian-American rock band that had previously tried, unsuccessfully, to register the name “The Slants”.

For many Washingtonians who have been following the debate over the city’s controversial name of the local football team, this recent ruling has sent off a tidal wave of emotions, ranging from relief to rage. On the 9th of January 2016, the Executive Director of the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI), Jacqueline Pata, spoke to the American Name Society on the use of racist and derogatory names by US American sports franchises.

ANS member Laura Heymann, from William & Mary Law School, mentioned this specific ruling in her talk “Naming and Reclaiming”, which she presented at the ANS annual meeting on the 10th of January 2016. She also covers it in a guest post on the Technology & Marketing Law Blog.