It depends. Are you using it to sell products or services as a connection to the sports teams? If so, then they could make an infringement claim. If you are using it on soup or on other non-sport team related products, then you would be fine.
The colors used in the logo and for the uniforms of a sports team are part of the team's overall "trade dress" that brands that particular team [along with the team name, mascot and logo]. To infringe that trade dress it's not necessary to use all of those elements -- it may suffice to simply use the particular colors. While the team does not own the right to prevent all others from using the same two colors that its uses, sometimes the other person's particular use and advertising DOES create a likelihood that consumers will be fooled into believing that the other's product is made by the team or endorced or sponsored by or associated with the team. Each situation requires its own analysis. Good luck.
The above response is general information ONLY and is not legal advice, does not form an attorney-client relationship, and should NOT be relied upon to take or refrain from taking any action. I am not your attorney. You should seek the advice of competent counsel before taking any action related to your inquiry.
A big part of the answer to your question depends on what goods/services you are selling in connection with the colors and the likelihood that your use will confuse consumers as to the source. Colors can be protected under trademark law if they do not serve a functional purpose, so you may want to have an attorney research for you whether the colors you intend to use are protected already.
The answers appearing on this Website from Creative Vision Legal and Michael J. Thomas do not constitute a guarantee, warranty, or prediction regarding the outcome of your legal matter, and are presented only as information to members of the general public.
Can you sell a red and black stick? Sure. But I don't think that's quite what you're doing. There are a lot of shades of red and a lot of shades of black. Thousands, I believe. UGa and the Falcons surely have selected particular shades, patterns, and so forth. I suspect that maybe what you're trying to do is color-match so you create an association between your whatever-it-is and the team, and the reason for your question is you're trying to get "permission." If that's it, then you're probably going to be infringing; the next question will be whether you have a fair-use defense, there aren't enough details in your question to answer that, and "fishing" implies that you won't have a fair-use defense.
Looks like it is unanimous. If you are selling a red and black stick in Georgia that somehow suggests a connection (because of the color scheme) with the university or Falcons, because it is clear to potential purchasers that there is a connection, then you're violating their rights. If you're selling a red an black stick that isn't like any such product authorized by the schools, doesn't suggest to people who are familiar with the school or Falcons that it is connected with the, may be a different story. But, if in your own mind you are using red and black because you WANT the potential customer to be a UGA or Falcons fan AND they will think that it suggests support for UGA or the Falcons, ten use a different color or get a license to make it and sell it.
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