Delaware State Rep. Misuses Official Army Seal

Steven Smyk – Official DE General Assembly photo

In the days immediately preceding the 2018 general election, voters in the 20th Representative District received a card in the mail from incumbent Delaware State Representative Steve Smyk (R), whose apparent misuse of the official US Department of the Army seal in his campaign literature is most probably illegal and/or highly questionable at best.

Smyk 2018 campaign mailing

The official US Department of the Army seal (seen to the immediate right of the State of Delaware flag along the bottom of the political mailing) is a registered trademark of the US Government intended for official use only and generally cannot be used by non-federal entities without prior permission of the parent federal agency. Federal seals legally are protected under USC, Title 18, sections 506, 701, and 1017.

Closeup of Smyk 2018 campaign mailing with apparent misuse of the US Department of the Army seal (lower right)

Under no circumstances, does the use or misuse of the US Department of Defense seal and/or the official seals of any of its constituent armed services constitute expressed or implied endorsement of a given political candidate or cause.

Relevant DOD Policy guidelines on the non-federal use of official seals and other intellectual property are publicly available at: https://dod.defense.gov/Portals/1/Documents/Trademarks/DOD%20Trademark%20Licensing%20Guide-16%20July%202017.pdf and

https://dod.defense.gov/Resources/Trademarks/.

Similar literature was distributed in his previous campaigns.

3 thoughts on “Delaware State Rep. Misuses Official Army Seal”

  1. Good to see this blog calling out folks on its side. Would that all other competitive blogs would do so in ways other than ideological.

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