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Do you think Snyder should change the name of the Redskins?

Should the Washington Redskins change their name?  

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On the economics, FWIW, I moved to the DC area from NJ about 15 years ago. I've slowly changed my allegiance to most of the local teams in that time (from the Yankees to the Nats, from the Nets to the Wizards, and from the Devils to the Caps), but I still root for the Giants over the Redskins. I can't quite explain all of the reasons why, but the name is definitely part of it.

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On the economics, FWIW, I moved to the DC area from NJ about 15 years ago. I've slowly changed my allegiance to most of the local teams in that time (from the Yankees to the Nats, from the Nets to the Wizards, and from the Devils to the Caps), but I still root for the Giants over the Redskins. I can't quite explain all of the reasons why, but the name is definitely part of it.

I'm a DC lifer. I own a wardrobe full of Nats stuff and several Caps and Wizards items. Not a single Redskins item, and the name is the primary reason. They're my favorite NFL team and always will be, but I can't bring myself to wear anything that says Redskins on it.

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they asked people to stop, so just stop. mr. synder can change the name and logo and then enjoy the 80 million in profits that it will create in jersey sales. everyone wins.

I'd bet you $80 million Snyder would make less money per year off a new name than he would sticking with Redskins. I have no real guess how much less, but I'm confident it would be less. Of course, it would important what the new name becomes. A lame name would kill them in revenue.
I think the "New Coke" phenomenon of the eighties would kick in big time, with fans rushing out to buy out all the old memorabilia, and then buying the new stuff, double payoff.

A true fan will still buy hats and jersies no matter what. I am a Colts fan and if Irsay decided to change the team name to the Indianapolis Dingle-berries tomorrow, and keep in mind he is crazy enough to do it, I would be among the first rushing to fanatics.com to buy some new stuff.

Yeah, the old stuff would go like hot cakes. But, once that runs out, I just think the people who would be excited about the new name would be too small. Timing matters for something like this. Right now, I just think it would totally piss off tons of fans. Ticket sales would likely be hurt. And, I'd say the majority of people who would still go to games would be wearing their old stuff for years. I think the only way it would work financially in the short term is for them to pick the perfect name change and logo that doesn't piss off too many people and they immediately experience a lot of winning. If they go with something like "Wizards" and the world's worst colors and logo and lose year after year, it would be a total disaster.
No chance. Ticket sales have three variables: $, quality of team, and gameday experience. That's all 99.99% of fans care about Maybe you'd find 100 idiots who wouldn't buy tickets as some misguided protest of all the "PC liberals ruining America," but if the team is winning someone else would buy their tickets anyway.
For years, all three of those variables have sucked. Tickets aren't cheap (but also not the most expensive in the league), the quality of the team has mostly sucked, and the gameday experience is horrible (unless they are winning). So why are tickets purchased? I think there is a huge chunk of fans who attend games because of their memories and love of the team. Yes, there are thousands and thousands of fans in the stadium for other reasons, but there is a high % of die hards. And they are die hards for the Redskins. I'm not saying they'd stop buying as a protest. I'm saying they'd stop buying because of a loss of fandom. To many, if they have a different name then they are a different team. They will no longer be the team they have loved for years.

The team already struggles somewhat to sell seats, especially compared to what it used to be like. That's a league-wide issue, though. Yes, if 100 people stop buying because of a name change, they'll find 100 people to replace them. But, I think it would be much more than 100. I have no idea what the number would be, but my guess is it would be a number that wouldn't simply be replaced by the next X number of fans just waiting for tickets.

To SSOG's question, the honest answer is that I have no idea if I'd stop supporting the team if they changed their name to, say, the Washington Hogs. I'd honestly have to wait to see how I feel when it happens and then I can tell you. Maybe it would matter, maybe it wouldn't. I really don't know until it happens.

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I don't even like the Redskins, but I'm a huge RGIII fan; if Washington ever changed their team name, the first thing I'd do would be buy one of the new Griffin jerseys.

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Also worth pointing out: while it's not as severe as a name change, plenty of teams have dramatically altered the look of their franchise. In the late '90s and early '00s you had the Broncos, Patriots, and Bills all changing out of color schemes that had been tradition for decades, that the team had achieved a lot of success in. Teams change logos all the time. Teams move cities, and often change names in the process. They all seem to survive without their franchises going into a death spiral or fans abandoning the team in droves (well, except for the moving cities thing). And the name "Washington Hogs" wasn't pulled out of thin air. I think a lot of fans fear that they'll lose touch with a team's roots or origins if the name changes, so why not pick a name that pays homage to the team's roots or origins? How could Washington fans lose connection to those SBs when the team was named after the engine behind those SB wins?

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I don't even like the Redskins, but I'm a huge RGIII fan; if Washington ever changed their team name, the first thing I'd do would be buy one of the new Griffin jerseys.

I believe he already has the #1 selling jersey.

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Also worth pointing out: while it's not as severe as a name change, plenty of teams have dramatically altered the look of their franchise. In the late '90s and early '00s you had the Broncos, Patriots, and Bills all changing out of color schemes that had been tradition for decades, that the team had achieved a lot of success in. Teams change logos all the time. Teams move cities, and often change names in the process. They all seem to survive without their franchises going into a death spiral or fans abandoning the team in droves (well, except for the moving cities thing).

I certainly wouldn't predict that the team would fade away and reach financial ruin. I just don't think, in the short run, that they'd experience any boom to revenue. I predict, in the short run, they'd make less revenue. In the long run, they'd be fine (assuming some level of winning success).In general, I'm actually a huge fan of change. The Redskins have changed their logo and styles over the years. Change isn't the issue.

And the name "Washington Hogs" wasn't pulled out of thin air. I think a lot of fans fear that they'll lose touch with a team's roots or origins if the name changes, so why not pick a name that pays homage to the team's roots or origins? How could Washington fans lose connection to those SBs when the team was named after the engine behind those SB wins?

I don't know, seems like a stupid name but they could easily do worse. Then again, if they had been the Washington Hogs since 1933, I'd probably think it was an awesome name.

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Imagine changing the name NY Yankees to the Bronx Bombers or NY Highlanders..now,how much value would that franchise immediately lose? 50-60%? probably a lot more than that!

:link:

That estimate is so far beyond the realms of credibility that it almost doesn't even bear rebutting. Basically, a team's only source of revenue is its fan base- tickets sold to fans, tv rights to broadcast to fans, merchandise marketed to fans, etc. If we assume that the amount fans spend is based on how much the team wins (a reasonable assumption), and the amount a team wins is unrelated to what it's called (also a reasonable assumption: see Lakers), then the only way a team loses 50% of its value is if it loses 50% of its fan base. And to be perfectly honest, I'd be surprised if a team lost FIVE percent of its fan base over a name change.

Honest question: is there a single Redskins fan in this thread that would stop supporting their team if they changed their name to, say, the Washington Hogs?

You're wrong on this one.

I'm a huge Redskins fan. I wouldn't stop being a huge fan. I WOULD stop buying jerseys, hats, and would have less interest in buying tickets to see the Washington Hogs. I'd actually be a little ashamed to tell people I'm a hogs fan. The entire team itself would hold less appeal in my opinion. There's an aspect about tradition and feeling like you're watching the same team you've been watching your entire life. Making a drastic name change, logo change, etc. removes a lot of that nostalgia.

Agreed that it's not 50%, but it's not 5% either, especially for the Yankees.

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Also worth pointing out: while it's not as severe as a name change, plenty of teams have dramatically altered the look of their franchise. In the late '90s and early '00s you had the Broncos, Patriots, and Bills all changing out of color schemes that had been tradition for decades, that the team had achieved a lot of success in. Teams change logos all the time. Teams move cities, and often change names in the process. They all seem to survive without their franchises going into a death spiral or fans abandoning the team in droves (well, except for the moving cities thing). And the name "Washington Hogs" wasn't pulled out of thin air. I think a lot of fans fear that they'll lose touch with a team's roots or origins if the name changes, so why not pick a name that pays homage to the team's roots or origins? How could Washington fans lose connection to those SBs when the team was named after the engine behind those SB wins?

Big difference between a very slight change in the Broncos color scheme and a complete change in name and logo. You have to recognize that a very slight shift from the previous Broncos to the current Broncos is 100% different than the shift from the Washington Bullets to the Washington Wizards. Being a fan of the Bullets brought a sense of pride. Being a fan of the Wizards...well, I don't think there are any fans of the Wizards :mellow:

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Imagine changing the name NY Yankees to the Bronx Bombers or NY Highlanders..now,how much value would that franchise immediately lose? 50-60%? probably a lot more than that!

:link:

That estimate is so far beyond the realms of credibility that it almost doesn't even bear rebutting. Basically, a team's only source of revenue is its fan base- tickets sold to fans, tv rights to broadcast to fans, merchandise marketed to fans, etc. If we assume that the amount fans spend is based on how much the team wins (a reasonable assumption), and the amount a team wins is unrelated to what it's called (also a reasonable assumption: see Lakers), then the only way a team loses 50% of its value is if it loses 50% of its fan base. And to be perfectly honest, I'd be surprised if a team lost FIVE percent of its fan base over a name change.

Honest question: is there a single Redskins fan in this thread that would stop supporting their team if they changed their name to, say, the Washington Hogs?

You're wrong on this one.

I'm a huge Redskins fan. I wouldn't stop being a huge fan. I WOULD stop buying jerseys, hats, and would have less interest in buying tickets to see the Washington Hogs. I'd actually be a little ashamed to tell people I'm a hogs fan. The entire team itself would hold less appeal in my opinion. There's an aspect about tradition and feeling like you're watching the same team you've been watching your entire life. Making a drastic name change, logo change, etc. removes a lot of that nostalgia.

Agreed that it's not 50%, but it's not 5% either, especially for the Yankees.

It's not 5% because it's less. A lot less.

It's easy to talk this game now, but I find it VERY hard to believe that a name change- even a "traditional" "longstanding" name, would have a significant negative impact on a team's bottom line. Mostly because I'm not aware of a single example where it has, and plenty of examples where it hasn't (Wizards, Titans, Angels changing their geographic description without changing location, and so on). Check the attendance numbers, or the franchise valuations. You won't see any negative impact. If you can find the merch sales numbers, check those too. I couldn't find them but I bet the impact was minimal.

And no offense, but if you think your fandom would be affected by a mascot change, I wonder about the depth of your fandom to begin with. Your mileage may vary- and I guess yours would- but to me, mascot preference is WAY down the list of reasons I'd like a team. Certainly a review of the most popular sports franchises confirms my suspicions. There's some exceedingly stupid nicknames and mascots out there if you stop and think about it. Nobody cares.

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Also worth pointing out: while it's not as severe as a name change, plenty of teams have dramatically altered the look of their franchise. In the late '90s and early '00s you had the Broncos, Patriots, and Bills all changing out of color schemes that had been tradition for decades, that the team had achieved a lot of success in. Teams change logos all the time. Teams move cities, and often change names in the process. They all seem to survive without their franchises going into a death spiral or fans abandoning the team in droves (well, except for the moving cities thing).

And the name "Washington Hogs" wasn't pulled out of thin air. I think a lot of fans fear that they'll lose touch with a team's roots or origins if the name changes, so why not pick a name that pays homage to the team's roots or origins? How could Washington fans lose connection to those SBs when the team was named after the engine behind those SB wins?

Big difference between a very slight change in the Broncos color scheme and a complete change in name and logo. You have to recognize that a very slight shift from the previous Broncos to the current Broncos is 100% different than the shift from the Washington Bullets to the Washington Wizards.

Being a fan of the Bullets brought a sense of pride. Being a fan of the Wizards...well, I don't think there are any fans of the Wizards :mellow:

You're wrong. Link

Team changed its name between the 96-97 and 97-98 seasons.

Edited by TobiasFunke

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Being a fan of the Bullets brought a sense of pride. Being a fan of the Wizards...well, I don't think there are any fans of the Wizards :mellow:

You're wrong. Link

Team changed its name between the 96-97 and 97-98 seasons.

That's also the time where they moved from the Cap Center to the MCI (Verizon) Center where there are a few thousand more seats. Having larger numbers of seats sold in a larger arena doesn't necessarily mean they added more fans.

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Being a fan of the Bullets brought a sense of pride. Being a fan of the Wizards...well, I don't think there are any fans of the Wizards :mellow:

You're wrong. Link

Team changed its name between the 96-97 and 97-98 seasons.

That's also the time where they moved from the Cap Center to the MCI (Verizon) Center where there are a few thousand more seats. Having larger numbers of seats sold in a larger arena doesn't necessarily mean they added more fans.
But they didn't lose fans, which is what was being suggested. If they lost fans it wouldn't have mattered if they were in a bigger building- it would just be emptier.

I could do this with the Titans change or the Angels change too. In each case you would point to many, many other factors before pointing to the name change as impacting attendance or ratings or merchandise sales or whatever. People might think they're losing touch with "tradition" or something in theory, but the truth is that nobody really cares, at least not in a way that matters from a financial standpoint. Personally I HATE the Wizards nickname and really wish they'd switch back to Bullets. But it doesn't influence my behavior as a fan one bit, and I suspect 99% of fans are the same way.

Edited by TobiasFunke

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Imagine changing the name NY Yankees to the Bronx Bombers or NY Highlanders..now,how much value would that franchise immediately lose? 50-60%? probably a lot more than that!

:link:

That estimate is so far beyond the realms of credibility that it almost doesn't even bear rebutting. Basically, a team's only source of revenue is its fan base- tickets sold to fans, tv rights to broadcast to fans, merchandise marketed to fans, etc. If we assume that the amount fans spend is based on how much the team wins (a reasonable assumption), and the amount a team wins is unrelated to what it's called (also a reasonable assumption: see Lakers), then the only way a team loses 50% of its value is if it loses 50% of its fan base. And to be perfectly honest, I'd be surprised if a team lost FIVE percent of its fan base over a name change.

Honest question: is there a single Redskins fan in this thread that would stop supporting their team if they changed their name to, say, the Washington Hogs?

You're wrong on this one.

I'm a huge Redskins fan. I wouldn't stop being a huge fan. I WOULD stop buying jerseys, hats, and would have less interest in buying tickets to see the Washington Hogs. I'd actually be a little ashamed to tell people I'm a hogs fan. The entire team itself would hold less appeal in my opinion. There's an aspect about tradition and feeling like you're watching the same team you've been watching your entire life. Making a drastic name change, logo change, etc. removes a lot of that nostalgia.

Agreed that it's not 50%, but it's not 5% either, especially for the Yankees.

It's not 5% because it's less. A lot less.

It's easy to talk this game now, but I find it VERY hard to believe that a name change- even a "traditional" "longstanding" name, would have a significant negative impact on a team's bottom line. Mostly because I'm not aware of a single example where it has, and plenty of examples where it hasn't (Wizards, Titans, Angels changing their geographic description without changing location, and so on). Check the attendance numbers, or the franchise valuations. You won't see any negative impact. If you can find the merch sales numbers, check those too. I couldn't find them but I bet the impact was minimal.

And no offense, but if you think your fandom would be affected by a mascot change, I wonder about the depth of your fandom to begin with. Your mileage may vary- and I guess yours would- but to me, mascot preference is WAY down the list of reasons I'd like a team. Certainly a review of the most popular sports franchises confirms my suspicions. There's some exceedingly stupid nicknames and mascots out there if you stop and think about it. Nobody cares.

Exactly. Just like the number of people who said they'd move to Canada if Bush was re-elected dramatically outnumbered the number of people who moved to Canada after Bush was re-elected. And the number of companies who said they'd lay off their workforce if Obama was re-elected dramatically outnumbered the number of companies who laid off their work force when Obama was re-elected. There's two factors at play here- first, talk is cheap, and second, people are really bad at predicting their own actions. I mean, seriously, even if the Redskins changed their name to the Washington Buckets or the Washington Sponges, few fans would abandon the team. What are the other options? Root for the Ravens? Stop watching football? I have a hard time seeing Redskins fans doing either.

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You see the same pattern with stadium naming rights, too. Everyone complains bitterly and talks about tradition and speculates on whether they'll care as much about the team, and then they buy just as many tickets to see them play at Invesco Field at Mile High or the O.Co Colliseum.

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I don't even like the Redskins, but I'm a huge RGIII fan; if Washington ever changed their team name, the first thing I'd do would be buy one of the new Griffin jerseys.

I'm pretty sure that a name change to the Washington Griffons would have enough fans chuckling with glee at the reference.

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'We Are Very Proud To Be Called Redskins'Posted Feb 11, 2013"Redskins""We are very proud of our athletic teams and very proud to be called Redskins!"These are the words of Coshocton High School athletic director George Hemming, who serves as the athletic director for just one of the 70 different High Schools in 25 states are known as the Redskins.Redskins.com found that there are almost as many schools using the name Redskins as Cowboys, as only 75 schools use the name Cowboys, and interestingly just 19 use the name Giants.Coshocton High School is located in east central Ohio which has a rich Native American history. Hemming said "the name represents to us competition and pride."In eastern Ohio, the name Redskins was adopted by Indian Creek High School in 1993.Principal Steve Cowser said the name was selected when two schools with the nicknames Warriors and Indians were merged, and thus the Indian Creek Redskins were born.Cowser explained how the name shows their "pride for the Native Americans and how they lived."As Indian Creek High is a 45 minute drive from Pittsburgh, Cowser closed by stating, "Go Steelers," as a reminder of where his NFL loyalties stand.These schools' athletes have a deep connection, just as the Washington Redskins alumni, and many high school student-athletes have pride in calling themselves Redskins.One familiar high school Redskins athlete was Washington Redskins star Brian Orakpo, who played for the Lamar Redskins in his high School days in Houston, Texas.A full list of all schools and names can be found at www.maxpreps.com.

http://www.redskins.com/news-and-events/article-1/We-Are-Very-Proud-To-Be-Called-Redskins/d4d7c05d-be39-4a27-9244-d06cfae46797

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'We Are Very Proud To Be Called Redskins'Posted Feb 11, 2013"Redskins""We are very proud of our athletic teams and very proud to be called Redskins!"These are the words of Coshocton High School athletic director George Hemming, who serves as the athletic director for just one of the 70 different High Schools in 25 states are known as the Redskins.Redskins.com found that there are almost as many schools using the name Redskins as Cowboys, as only 75 schools use the name Cowboys, and interestingly just 19 use the name Giants.Coshocton High School is located in east central Ohio which has a rich Native American history. Hemming said "the name represents to us competition and pride."In eastern Ohio, the name Redskins was adopted by Indian Creek High School in 1993.Principal Steve Cowser said the name was selected when two schools with the nicknames Warriors and Indians were merged, and thus the Indian Creek Redskins were born.Cowser explained how the name shows their "pride for the Native Americans and how they lived."As Indian Creek High is a 45 minute drive from Pittsburgh, Cowser closed by stating, "Go Steelers," as a reminder of where his NFL loyalties stand.These schools' athletes have a deep connection, just as the Washington Redskins alumni, and many high school student-athletes have pride in calling themselves Redskins.One familiar high school Redskins athlete was Washington Redskins star Brian Orakpo, who played for the Lamar Redskins in his high School days in Houston, Texas.A full list of all schools and names can be found at www.maxpreps.com.

http://www.redskins.com/news-and-events/article-1/We-Are-Very-Proud-To-Be-Called-Redskins/d4d7c05d-be39-4a27-9244-d06cfae46797
Deadspin pretty much nailed this one.Sometimes it's really embarrassing being a fan of a Snyder team.

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To SSOG's question, the honest answer is that I have no idea if I'd stop supporting the team if they changed their name to, say, the Washington Hogs. I'd honestly have to wait to see how I feel when it happens and then I can tell you. Maybe it would matter, maybe it wouldn't. I really don't know until it happens.

that's ridiculous. there is no way in heck fans would stop supporting their team because of a name change. that wouldn't even be on the radar from the franchise' point of view.why do you think teams change their uniforms and logos so often? it always creates a spike in merchandise sales. if it didn't work, they wouldn't do it.

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http://itre.cis.upenn.edu/~myl/languagelog/archives/002961.html

Good read with links to documents that include speeches made by native American chiefs where they refer to themselves a "red skins". Also link to study/paper done by Ives Goddard, curator and senior linguist in the Department of Anthropology, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution. The study basically shows that the term "red skins" was started and used in translations by the native Americans themselves. The originating use of the term Redskins as a team name (Boston Redskins) was in tribute to the head coach, himself a native American. It's not offensive as some people are making it out to be. I admit I didn't really know the background of it all, but doing some reading brought up some interesting stuff

It is offensive to some Native Americans. That's clearly established in like ten different posts and links in this thread alone. if it wasn't they wouldn't be saying and doing the many things they're saying and doing to combat use of the name.

I suspect you meant to say "it's not AS offensive as people are making it out to be." That's already a losing position. If you're doing historical research to evaluate the extent of the offensiveness, the argument is lost- it's a stupid name and it should be changed. There's no reason to keep an offensive nickname just because it's not that offensive. That's silly. Not even close to as silly as Tanner 9919's post about the Yankees losing more than 60% of their franchise's value if they changed their name, but still pretty silly.

I could care less either way to be honest. But I just thought I put out some info that I found on the subject that goes against what some people are deeming as 100% fact. This "fact" is that the term "Redskins" is offensive to all nativa Americans and is the equivalent to using the N word in referring to black people. It's not that black and white, pun not intended. Now the fact that it's such an issue at this point leads me to believe that they should just give it up and change the name.

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http://itre.cis.upenn.edu/~myl/languagelog/archives/002961.html

Good read with links to documents that include speeches made by native American chiefs where they refer to themselves a "red skins". Also link to study/paper done by Ives Goddard, curator and senior linguist in the Department of Anthropology, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution. The study basically shows that the term "red skins" was started and used in translations by the native Americans themselves. The originating use of the term Redskins as a team name (Boston Redskins) was in tribute to the head coach, himself a native American. It's not offensive as some people are making it out to be. I admit I didn't really know the background of it all, but doing some reading brought up some interesting stuff

It is offensive to some Native Americans. That's clearly established in like ten different posts and links in this thread alone. if it wasn't they wouldn't be saying and doing the many things they're saying and doing to combat use of the name.

I suspect you meant to say "it's not AS offensive as people are making it out to be." That's already a losing position. If you're doing historical research to evaluate the extent of the offensiveness, the argument is lost- it's a stupid name and it should be changed. There's no reason to keep an offensive nickname just because it's not that offensive. That's silly. Not even close to as silly as Tanner 9919's post about the Yankees losing more than 60% of their franchise's value if they changed their name, but still pretty silly.

I could care less either way to be honest. But I just thought I put out some info that I found on the subject that goes against what some people are deeming as 100% fact. This "fact" is that the term "Redskins" is offensive to all nativa Americans and is the equivalent to using the N word in referring to black people. It's not that black and white, pun not intended. Now the fact that it's such an issue at this point leads me to believe that they should just give it up and change the name.
Nobody has said the bolded, to my knowledge. What has been said is that it's offensive to a significant number of Native Americans. That IS a fact. So I'm not sure how it's relevant to say that some people don't think it's offensive.

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I did a search and did not see where this has been brought up recently, but it's making headlines againRedskins name deemed "Racial Slur". The article even mentions protests and asking RG3 to get involved.At one time I think I would have found it silly to even think about changing something so familiar and tradition filled. But now I wonder if it is truly offensive to someone of that race, maybe a name change isn't the worst idea.We all are aware of the history of racism in this country, and a team name with almost any other racial slur being changed wouldn't even be up for debate.Am I just turning way too leftist in my old age, or is there reason to consider this?

I find it very offensive. They should change it to the "Fourskins", as a tribute to the Hogs.

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I don't think the Wizards, Titans, and Angels are very good comps for the Redskins. I'll admit it is romanticized a bit, but the Redskins do have a decent number (no idea how many) of people who have held season tickets in their family since before any of those franchise existed. That has reduced over time with people giving up tickets for a variety of reasons (too expensive, losing, don't like the owner, don't like the stadium location, etc.). But, it's still exist for the Redskins more than many other franchises. Comparing the Redskins situation to the Tennessee Titans, who spent one full year named the Tennessee Oilers (and played in Memphis) before changing, is nowhere near a fair comparison regarding name changes. Of course the people of Nashville didn't run away when they changed their name. Why would they? Maybe some of us are overestimating the impact, but I think others are underestimating.

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I don't think the Wizards, Titans, and Angels are very good comps for the Redskins. I'll admit it is romanticized a bit, but the Redskins do have a decent number (no idea how many) of people who have held season tickets in their family since before any of those franchise existed. That has reduced over time with people giving up tickets for a variety of reasons (too expensive, losing, don't like the owner, don't like the stadium location, etc.). But, it's still exist for the Redskins more than many other franchises. Comparing the Redskins situation to the Tennessee Titans, who spent one full year named the Tennessee Oilers (and played in Memphis) before changing, is nowhere near a fair comparison regarding name changes. Of course the people of Nashville didn't run away when they changed their name. Why would they? Maybe some of us are overestimating the impact, but I think others are underestimating.

As I said, say the Redskins change their name to the Washington Sponges, or the Washington Buckets. What are you going to do? Root for the Ravens? Give up football? As a fan, my team would have to do something truly egregious for me to forsake my fanhood. I might rail and rage, but come game day, I'm always back on the couch cheering them on.

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I don't think the Wizards, Titans, and Angels are very good comps for the Redskins. I'll admit it is romanticized a bit, but the Redskins do have a decent number (no idea how many) of people who have held season tickets in their family since before any of those franchise existed. That has reduced over time with people giving up tickets for a variety of reasons (too expensive, losing, don't like the owner, don't like the stadium location, etc.). But, it's still exist for the Redskins more than many other franchises. Comparing the Redskins situation to the Tennessee Titans, who spent one full year named the Tennessee Oilers (and played in Memphis) before changing, is nowhere near a fair comparison regarding name changes. Of course the people of Nashville didn't run away when they changed their name. Why would they? Maybe some of us are overestimating the impact, but I think others are underestimating.

As I said, say the Redskins change their name to the Washington Sponges, or the Washington Buckets. What are you going to do? Root for the Ravens? Give up football?
As I've said, I honestly can't say what I'd do until it happens. But, you left out one option: "Still watch football, but not have a favorite team."

As a fan, my team would have to do something truly egregious for me to forsake my fanhood.

And all I'm saying is that my prediction is there are a lot of Redskins fans who would find a name change to be egregious.

I might rail and rage, but come game day, I'm always back on the couch cheering them on.

Why do you keep cheering them on?

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I don't think the Wizards, Titans, and Angels are very good comps for the Redskins. I'll admit it is romanticized a bit, but the Redskins do have a decent number (no idea how many) of people who have held season tickets in their family since before any of those franchise existed. That has reduced over time with people giving up tickets for a variety of reasons (too expensive, losing, don't like the owner, don't like the stadium location, etc.). But, it's still exist for the Redskins more than many other franchises. Comparing the Redskins situation to the Tennessee Titans, who spent one full year named the Tennessee Oilers (and played in Memphis) before changing, is nowhere near a fair comparison regarding name changes. Of course the people of Nashville didn't run away when they changed their name. Why would they? Maybe some of us are overestimating the impact, but I think others are underestimating.

Are the St. John's Redmen/Red Storm a better comp? While their program has been on the decline, I think it is hard to attribute that to the name change. There are also plenty of schools that have dropped Native American mascots, such as Stanford and Illinois, without much effect.Also not much effect with the name change to the Syracuse Orangemen/Orange. In the minor leagues, the Albuquerque Dukes (which had existed for 50 years) became the Albuquerque Isotopes, which turned into a merchandising coup. Edited by Don Quixote

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There was a contest by one of the area papers in DC about what they should change the name to.The winner isn't too bad, especially when you consider the team's history, what with "Hogs" and all: Pigskins. -QG

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While I think it's dangerous to fall into a pattern of constantly worrying about "offending" every minority group that comes along, it's just a name. If NATIVE AMERICAN PEOPLE are truly offended, then change it. If it's mostly hooty tooty middle aged white people trying to make a stink (and all too often, they are the driving force behind these types of complaints), then %#^$ them.

They are. Here's more from that symposium. I also remember seeing a list of all the Native American groups that have condemned it recently, I'll see if I can find it.

I'm a fan of the team, but bottom line to me is that there's really no significant downside to changing the name. If a significant number of people (more than just a few crazies) find it offensive, why not change it?

Because it would #### up our touchdown song! :rant:
Song still works with "Warriors." And it's alliterative!

I don't think anyone would have a problem with Warriors if you got rid of the Native American imagery. People who whine about using military analogies to talk about sports, maybe, but those people are terrible, so screw them.

So what kind of a logo are we talking about with this new name?
Link

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I might rail and rage, but come game day, I'm always back on the couch cheering them on.

Why do you keep cheering them on?
Because I'm a fan, and if I'm being perfectly honest, less than 1% of my enjoyment of rooting for the team has anything to do with their aesthetics. Denver could change their colors to puce and olive and I'd ##### about it because I like to feel like I have some sort of control over what the team does, but in the end, game day would be every bit as enjoyable to me after the color change as it was before.

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I might rail and rage, but come game day, I'm always back on the couch cheering them on.

Why do you keep cheering them on?
Because I'm a fan
Of what?

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I might rail and rage, but come game day, I'm always back on the couch cheering them on.

Why do you keep cheering them on?
Because I'm a fan
Of what?
Certainly not a name or a uniform. My fanhood stems from strong regional ties and shared memories. I grew up in Colorado, and being a fan of the Broncos preserves my roots. My extended family all came from there and now that they've moved across the country, it's become a common heritage. When I meet anyone else from the community of Broncos fans, we have an immediate shared history to unite us- we can immediately grab a beer and wax nostalgic over The Drive, or the heartbreak of 1996, or This One's for John. I don't for a second think that the Broncos are really any better or meritorious than any other franchise, or that my relationship with them is somehow unique. If I'd been born in Ohio, I'd probably be a Bengals or a Browns fan right now- and a damn proud one, at that. If I'd been born somewhere without a common rooting interest, I really could have picked any team at random and invested the time and energy necessary to make myself a fan, and I'd be just as happy and well-off as I am now. But the fact is that I was NOT born in Ohio, and I did NOT pick any team at random. I am a Broncos fan, and I've invested huge amounts of time and energy into that endeavor. I've learned the history and internalized the results. I've created a lifetime of memories, a scrapbook of where I was when certain events happened, of who I shared experiences with. I've woven my Broncos fanhood tightly into the tapestry of my identity, and it would take a lot more than a name change to sever that strand and pull it free. Hell, I don't even care about the name- I think it's a pretty mediocre name, to be honest. If I were rating the names from best to worst, it'd be middle of the pack. It's not as bad as the Packers or the Bills or the Jets or the Browns, but it's also no Lions, Bengals, Chargers, or Vikings. It's just a name, not really important except that it signifies some ephemeral concept in which I have heavily invested myself. That investment doesn't magically disappear if the name changes.

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The arguments against changing the name that I keep reading are:• It’s not offensive: Well, it is. Read the Wikipedia page about the term. Read recent statements by prominent Native American leaders. The group largely finds it offensive. Denying that they find it offensive to grasp at an argument for keeping your team’s name is… well… you decide.• It’s not as offensive as the n word: Really? That’s your argument? Torturing dogs isn’t as bad as murder. I still find Vick to be reprehensible. Also, I believe both terms are very, very offensive. They were used by a group of people that held one group as property and attempted genocide of another group. Both terms are certainly offensive enough that they shouldn’t be used.• The team will lose money: First, we don’t know if that’s true or false. They may very well make more money by attracting those that find the name and caricatures offensive. Second, being offensive toward a race of people carries more weight than that of a single billionaire’s finances.• Native Americans have used the term: African Americans used the same term their white owners did to describe themselves during slavery. It’s still offensive.• The name has been used for a long time, and even if offensive, in this one case it has become a sign of respect for Native Americans and a great tradition in football. Native Americans find it offensive, therefore it isn’t a show of respect. Also, African Americans were for centuries referred to by a term that is now pretty much unmentionable because it is so offensive. Neither has ever been a show of respect. I say, let’s show the Native American people the same respect we do the African Americans and stop using the term.Sorry, but all the arguments for not changing the name really seem like ill attempts to justify what we all know is extremely offensive.Like the name or not, here’s a good argument to change the name now:Eventually, the name will be changed. I believe this based on the history of our nation and how we seem to become progressively more accepting: Abolition of slavery, African American’s right to vote, women’s suffrage, The American’s With Disabilities Act, repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, and many more. I believe these things happened, not because the wealthy white wanted them. They happened because enough people were able to see how wrong the way things were that our politicians changed laws and the constitution under pressure from the voters. With the same progressive changes in society that propelled the legal changes, similar movements have been seen in society. It’s seen as offensive to ridicule or oppress people based on race, sexual orientation, disability, gender, etc. It used to be seen as acceptable. Eventually, enough people will decide the team name is offensive, and it will change. History will view the change the same way they did all the others: Wow, I am so ashamed that this occurred in my beloved country. The longer it takes, the larger the scar.

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Some important perspectives, particularly for the fans of the Washington team to read...those who assert that they would rather go on perpetuating racism and bigotry to salvage their own self-interests in retaining the name they simply associate with the team.

And, if you claim you won't watch or follow your team if they choose a new name, then your identity with said team is truly fissured to begin with and probably would benefit from some further reflection, because that's about the lamest thing I've ever heard. What a cop-out.

Edited by cobalt_27

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There was a contest by one of the area papers in DC about what they should change the name to.The winner isn't too bad, especially when you consider the team's history, what with "Hogs" and all: Pigskins. -QG

that wouldn't offend fat people?

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I might rail and rage, but come game day, I'm always back on the couch cheering them on.

Why do you keep cheering them on?
Because I'm a fan
Of what?
My fanhood stems from strong regional ties and shared memories.
Cool. That's how I'd describe my fanhood, too.

Hell, I don't even care about the name

I know. And my point in all of this discussion with you - which apparently I haven't made clear - is that some people do care about a name more than you do. I don't see why that's apparently such a crazy thing to say. It comes off as holier-than-thou to say, "My fanhood has nothing to do with a name, so yours shouldn't either." I simply predicted that they'd take a bigger financial hit than others think they would.As I've thought about it, though, I do need to alter my prediction to account for how it changes. It could range from a court-ordered change to a Snyder-trying-to-sell-more-jerseys change. The former probably wouldn't lead too many fans away. The latter would be the straw that broke the back of the thousands and thousands of people who are already pissed off at Snyder and have been close to leaving for years.

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He should change it to the Washington Griffins. That would avoid any debate about racism concerning native americans and pretty much sum up the only reason why people want to watch this team play.

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Hell, I don't even care about the name

I know. And my point in all of this discussion with you - which apparently I haven't made clear - is that some people do care about a name more than you do. I don't see why that's apparently such a crazy thing to say. It comes off as holier-than-thou to say, "My fanhood has nothing to do with a name, so yours shouldn't either." I simply predicted that they'd take a bigger financial hit than others think they would.As I've thought about it, though, I do need to alter my prediction to account for how it changes. It could range from a court-ordered change to a Snyder-trying-to-sell-more-jerseys change. The former probably wouldn't lead too many fans away. The latter would be the straw that broke the back of the thousands and thousands of people who are already pissed off at Snyder and have been close to leaving for years.
If you got 1,000 Redkins fans together (without telling them why) and had them write down their top 5 reasons for fanhood, their top 5 favorite things about the team, how often do you think "their name" would show up? Out of 5,000 possible data points, I'd venture it would show up less than 50 times. In fact, I would not be the least bit surprised if it failed to show up a single time. I would be absolutely shocked if it was #1 on even a single list. How many people are going to stop rooting for a franchise because that franchise kept their top 5 favorite things intact and changed something well down the list, instead?I also imagine if you did the same exercise and asked 1,000 Redskins fans what their 5 least favorite things were about the team, their name would show up a lot more frequently.

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Hell, I don't even care about the name

I know. And my point in all of this discussion with you - which apparently I haven't made clear - is that some people do care about a name more than you do. I don't see why that's apparently such a crazy thing to say. It comes off as holier-than-thou to say, "My fanhood has nothing to do with a name, so yours shouldn't either." I simply predicted that they'd take a bigger financial hit than others think they would.As I've thought about it, though, I do need to alter my prediction to account for how it changes. It could range from a court-ordered change to a Snyder-trying-to-sell-more-jerseys change. The former probably wouldn't lead too many fans away. The latter would be the straw that broke the back of the thousands and thousands of people who are already pissed off at Snyder and have been close to leaving for years.
If you got 1,000 Redkins fans together (without telling them why) and had them write down their top 5 reasons for fanhood, their top 5 favorite things about the team, how often do you think "their name" would show up? Out of 5,000 possible data points, I'd venture it would show up less than 50 times. In fact, I would not be the least bit surprised if it failed to show up a single time. I would be absolutely shocked if it was #1 on even a single list. How many people are going to stop rooting for a franchise because that franchise kept their top 5 favorite things intact and changed something well down the list, instead?I also imagine if you did the same exercise and asked 1,000 Redskins fans what their 5 least favorite things were about the team, their name would show up a lot more frequently.
If I'm one of those 1,000 the name would be second on my list of least favorite things, behind only Snyder.

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Hell, I don't even care about the name

I know. And my point in all of this discussion with you - which apparently I haven't made clear - is that some people do care about a name more than you do. I don't see why that's apparently such a crazy thing to say. It comes off as holier-than-thou to say, "My fanhood has nothing to do with a name, so yours shouldn't either." I simply predicted that they'd take a bigger financial hit than others think they would.As I've thought about it, though, I do need to alter my prediction to account for how it changes. It could range from a court-ordered change to a Snyder-trying-to-sell-more-jerseys change. The former probably wouldn't lead too many fans away. The latter would be the straw that broke the back of the thousands and thousands of people who are already pissed off at Snyder and have been close to leaving for years.
If you got 1,000 Redkins fans together (without telling them why) and had them write down their top 5 reasons for fanhood, their top 5 favorite things about the team, how often do you think "their name" would show up? Out of 5,000 possible data points, I'd venture it would show up less than 50 times. In fact, I would not be the least bit surprised if it failed to show up a single time. I would be absolutely shocked if it was #1 on even a single list. How many people are going to stop rooting for a franchise because that franchise kept their top 5 favorite things intact and changed something well down the list, instead?I also imagine if you did the same exercise and asked 1,000 Redskins fans what their 5 least favorite things were about the team, their name would show up a lot more frequently.
I'm not seeing the relevance. Are you suggesting fans only leave their teams if one of their top five favorites changes?If we could rank all the teams by fans who care most about the team name, I'd guess the Redskins would be near the top of that list. I think that's pretty obvious by many Redskins fans' reaction every time this subject comes up. Is it enough to have the impact I think it will? Maybe not. I'll fully admit that things might not go the way I'm predicting. Really, all of this started when someone suggested changing the name would cause an increase in revenue; that it would be a good business decision for Snyder. My initial argument was against that. Who knows, maybe it would be relatively revenue neutral. But, I'm really not sure why you are so adamant that Redskins fans don't care about the name.

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Once Marquette University was forced to change their names from the Warriors, I pretty much tuned all this nonsense out.

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Just heard last night on ESPN Radio that Snyder has no intention of ever changing the name as long as he is owner. In fact is investing more into building the Redskin brand name. The bossman likes it so that is all that matters.

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Just heard last night on ESPN Radio that Snyder has no intention of ever changing the name as long as he is owner. In fact is investing more into building the Redskin brand name. The bossman likes it so that is all that matters.

Yes, he has said for years that he will not change it.

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There was a contest by one of the area papers in DC about what they should change the name to.The winner isn't too bad, especially when you consider the team's history, what with "Hogs" and all: Pigskins. -QG

Or in honor of the politicians and their spending bills: Washington Pork

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Just heard last night on ESPN Radio that Snyder has no intention of ever changing the name as long as he is owner. In fact is investing more into building the Redskin brand name. The bossman likes it so that is all that matters.

I promise you: if he loses the ability to trademark the name because the Patent and Trademark Office deems it offensive in the latest challenge (scheduled to be heard March 7), he'll change the name as soon as his appeals are exhausted. The bossman likes money, that's all that matters.

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Just heard last night on ESPN Radio that Snyder has no intention of ever changing the name as long as he is owner. In fact is investing more into building the Redskin brand name. The bossman likes it so that is all that matters.

I promise you: if he loses the ability to trademark the name because the Patent and Trademark Office deems it offensive in the latest challenge (scheduled to be heard March 7), he'll change the name as soon as his appeals are exhausted. The bossman likes money, that's all that matters.
Yep. But, how does the previous SCOTUS ruling work with whatever PTO might rule?

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Just heard last night on ESPN Radio that Snyder has no intention of ever changing the name as long as he is owner. In fact is investing more into building the Redskin brand name. The bossman likes it so that is all that matters.

I promise you: if he loses the ability to trademark the name because the Patent and Trademark Office deems it offensive in the latest challenge (scheduled to be heard March 7), he'll change the name as soon as his appeals are exhausted. The bossman likes money, that's all that matters.
Yep. But, how does the previous SCOTUS ruling work with whatever PTO might rule?
IIRC SCOTUS didn't rule, it just refused to hear the appeal from the lower courts on the previous decision. And the previous decision was made on procedural grounds. I won't bore you with the legal mumbo-jumbo but you can read the Wikipedia entry here if you want. The assumption is that the plaintiffs in this new challenge won't have the same procedural issues since they're younger. Of course the defendant is incredibly wealthy and will hire the best trademark lawyers around, so I'm sure they'll come up with a spectacular new defense strategy. We'll see what happens.

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Just heard last night on ESPN Radio that Snyder has no intention of ever changing the name as long as he is owner. In fact is investing more into building the Redskin brand name. The bossman likes it so that is all that matters.

I promise you: if he loses the ability to trademark the name because the Patent and Trademark Office deems it offensive in the latest challenge (scheduled to be heard March 7), he'll change the name as soon as his appeals are exhausted.

The bossman likes money, that's all that matters.

Yep. But, how does the previous SCOTUS ruling work with whatever PTO might rule?
IIRC SCOTUS didn't rule, it just refused to hear the appeal from the lower courts on the previous decision. And the previous decision was made on procedural grounds. I won't bore you with the legal mumbo-jumbo but you can read the Wikipedia entry here if you want. The assumption is that the plaintiffs in this new challenge won't have the same procedural issues since they're younger. Of course the defendant is incredibly wealthy and will hire the best trademark lawyers around, so I'm sure they'll come up with a spectacular new defense strategy. We'll see what happens.
Makes sense. Thanks.

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It seems like quite a stretch to lump it in with other racial slurs or racially charged language since literally no one uses this word outside of referring to an NFL football team. This isn't just a word, the name is a trademarked brand. I don't know of any other so-called racial slur that is trademarked. I think the only way Synder could be convinced to change it would be for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to void the trademark.

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It seems like quite a stretch to lump it in with other racial slurs or racially charged language since literally no one uses this word outside of referring to an NFL football team. This isn't just a word, the name is a trademarked brand. I don't know of any other so-called racial slur that is trademarked. I think the only way Synder could be convinced to change it would be for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to void the trademark.

You seem to suggest that it only became offensive after it was trademarked. It was trademarked long after it was used in an offensive manner. It has been used as a racial slur for hundreds of years. If someone were to trademark and of the other racial slurs, would it be OK to use them as the name of an NFL team?BTW, that's what the current challenge is because the name is offensive. Read the posts above.

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