A reader e-mailed me asking:

I do not know how many regular readers you have, but in addition to your personalized book have you considered some kind of VC t-shirt? May be a bit frivolous, but I would buy a couple.

He then added, believe it or not, "My socially aware and engaged ten-year old son would be thrilled to wear one. And then as a consequence so would my seven-year old daughter." No, I am not making this up just to drum up potential interest.

In any event, I'm tickled pink that some people might be interested in this, and I'd like to do something along these lines, just for fun (I'm pretty sure we wouldn't make more than a few bucks with this). My secret fantasy: One of us is walking through the airport, and we see a total stranger wearing a Volokh Conspiracy T-shirt. Odds? Pretty long, I figure. But, hey, a man's got to dream . . . .

In any case, I believe there are online services that will produce on the fly T-shirts, coffee mugs, mouse pads, and the like. I think CafePress does it, though I've had some glitches accessing their site, but I'll investigate things in more detail in a few weeks. So this shouldn't be that hard technically.

The question is what would make for a cool design. I expect that it should have our green-and-white header, but it might be nice to have something else — probably some amusing catchphrase, but I don't really know. If anyone has any design ideas, please post them in the Comments.

By posting the ideas, you're giving us a license to use them, though if we use yours, we'll naturally thank you on-blog, and send you a free goodie (T-shirt, coffee mug, or whatever else you choose of what we'll ultimately be offering). Remember, our generosity is legendary, which means semi-mythical.

Doug Sundseth (mail):
I suggest a polo shirt in your logo bar color (or a bit darker green for better contrast) with a VC monogram on the pocket. After all, it's not much of a conspiracy if you (metaphorically) shout, "Yoo hoo, we're conspiring over here; don't look!"
2.24.2005 8:19pm
Mr. X (mail) (www):
I'd suggest a snappy tagline like:

Front of shirt: Liberty. Fraternity. Conspiracy.

Back of shirt: The Volokh Conspiracy (in smaller text underneath)

Yours truly,
Mr. X

...loyal reader...
2.24.2005 8:35pm
Use the V that shows up in the browser bar with "The Volokh Conspiracy" written in black underneath.
And, yes, CafePress is the place to go.
2.24.2005 8:36pm
MGO (mail) (www):
The polo shirt would be classic. And, like a good conspiracy, it would be most apparent to those to those in association. The first thing to my mind, though, was the "tortfeasor" T-shirt popular in my 1L class.

So my suggestion: a solid green T-shirt with "CONSPIRATOR" on the back in white (and smaller URL below?), and a small VC logo on the vestigial front pocket area.

I also like Mr. X's tagline...

2.24.2005 8:54pm
Petro (mail):
I were this a vote I'd side with Mr. Sundseth.
2.24.2005 9:10pm
Teresa (mail) (www):
Maybe for the t-shirts or polo shirts you could have as suggested above the green V on the upper right side. With the back saying

Volokh Conspiracy

We came We saw We conspired

Yeah I know lame... I'm not real good at tag lines. *grin*
2.24.2005 9:13pm
treefroggy (mail):
VC ; Not Just a Good Idea, it's the Law >
2.24.2005 9:19pm
Mark Draughn (mail) (www):
I think you need a more methodical approach. First you find a tagline for the site, then you add a logo to the site. Once you've found something that people approve of, then you market the paraphernalia: T-shirts, mugs, mousepads, hoodies, boxers, thongs, your own line of legal attache cases, pens, key fobs, a book listing honorary conspirators (they can order a copy for $38.95 plus S&H), action figures, a video game, a fragrance line, franchise rights to set up other "Conspiracy" blogs, a designer label, and a 60-minute History Channel documentary about how the Volokhs came to America and built their empire.
2.24.2005 9:36pm
AlexanderKerdman (mail):
"VC: So vervy, it should be illegal..."
"VC: Novel, Nonobvious, Useful, and Sound"

Now gimme my free t-shirt :)
2.24.2005 9:44pm
Volokh conspiracy, it's legal
2.24.2005 9:48pm
This is so wrong, but...

A green t-shirt, on the front, some logo for the Volokh Conspiracy in white letters, right below it: "The Volokh Conspiracy: Barely Legal."
2.24.2005 9:56pm
Dustin (mail):
How about the front of the shirt reading just: "Conspiracy Theorist"

Or, make a pun on the last name of the Blogfather and print a picture of Eugene a la some abstract artist (I saw a picture of Polock's "Orange Head" that made me think of this).
2.24.2005 10:02pm
Misty (mail):
I don't have any cool design or tagline suggestions, but please for the love of all that is good and legal, offer it on something other than white t-shirts. :)
2.24.2005 10:04pm
Michael E. Lopez (mail) (www):
A white tee-shirt with a green box on the front that says Volokh Conspiracy (your logo). Underneath, the signatures of every one of the Conspirators, laid out at random.

Optionally, the signatures could be silk screened on the back, instead, around some cute quote or another. (I have to say, Liberty, Fraternity, Conspiracy from above would have my vote on that angle).

-Michael E. Lopez
2.24.2005 10:14pm
Dave (mail):
"Liberty and Conspiracy for All"

"Blogging Should be Legal"

"Conspiring Minds Want to Know"

"Law, Interrupted"

Front: "The first rule of Volokh Conspiracy is -"
Back: "You DO NOT talk about Volokh Conspiracy."
2.24.2005 10:56pm
CWR (mail):


PS: I don't speak Latin either, dammit, but does the english plural "WE came, WE..." work? Would be more populist, I suppose...
2.24.2005 11:44pm
Jake (mail):
I'd buy a coffee mug with the logo and the text "unindicted co-conspirator" on it.
2.24.2005 11:51pm
countertop (mail):
Big Green Letters on a White Shirt (sort of like the Choose Life shirt George Michael wore in the the first Wham! music video from the mid 80s) proclaiming Elvis Is Alive

Underneath, or on the back, in smaller print

"The Conspiracy Lives" with the url underneath it.
2.24.2005 11:53pm
Patrick McKenzie (mail):
For your law geek friends:

Volokh Conspiracy: An overt act is NOT required in this jurisdiction.
2.25.2005 12:14am
Bob Woolley (mail):
"We don't sweat--we conspire."

"Conspiracy to commit conspiracy."

"Volokh et al--not your average conspiracy."

Front graphic: The words "constitutional piracy" are repeated several times, in a downward cascade; the middle letters gradually fade and get squeezed out line by line, so that the last iteration is just "conspiracy." Then on the back.

Graphic: a bonfire, into which somebody is throwing a banner or sign reading "" Under this graphic it says, "Throw another blog on the fire."

Graphic: an extremely suspicious face (looking like it might be that of a spy, perhaps), with a finger to his lips in the "Shhhhh" gesture. Underneath, the words "Are you in on The Conspiracy?" Back is the web address.
2.25.2005 12:15am
Fernando R (mail):
Disclaimer: I’m not an artist; I’m working hard to get into law school. Here it goes: shirt design and color are not of pressing concern. Though try to stay away from pastels, pink, purple, red, and green; but if pressed to choose, I would say go with a black T-shirt. Use two logos of the globe--a picture of the earth with lines of longitude and latitude (to convey precision)--placed symmetrically one on the front of the shirt the other on the back. In a forty-five degree angle from a viewers point of view place the name VOLOKH, so that the letter ‘V’ and ‘H’ reach as far as the ends of the globe. The size of the font should not cover most of the picture of the globe. That allows for recognition of the globe. On the back of the shirt depict the reverse side of the globe with the term ‘CONSPIRACY’ in a forty-five degree angle as well. The same principle applies to the letters ‘C’ and ‘Y’. I recommend a metallic-silver block looking font. In addition, place a small artificial satellite on the right side of the front globe casting a white-semi-transparent beam over Los Angeles. Situate the satellite to appear closer to the viewer than the globe (with a depiction of the American Flag on the satellite panel). Various conclusions may be drawn in terms of signifiers that relate to The Volokh Conspiracy. Finances permitting, include one of the supra quotes on the shirt.
2.25.2005 1:08am
How about one for the fans up north? I'm thinking along the lines of "Even Canadians Deserve Free Speech - Join the Conspiracy"
Also, to reflect a frequent thread on the site, how about a shirt that says only: "Hey, Weisberg, post the f-ing link!" Actually, I think I may just make one of those for myself . . .
2.25.2005 3:13am
Cory (mail):
I would suggest a variant on "Habeas Corpus," to mean "You must have the conspiracy." I can think of a few possiblities:

Habeas Conjurationem: It is the closest in meaning to "conspiracy," but is long and awkward. A possible variation: Habeas Conjuratos: "You must have the conspirators."

Habeas Conspirationem: Since it is obviously cognate with "conspiracy," it will get the idea across, but it is still too long.

Habeas Insidias. My personal favorite. It literally means "ambush" or "trap," but can mean "plot." It has a nice jingle to it, and most people will get the idea of what it means.
2.25.2005 4:39am
Perseus (mail):
For the logo, how about using the Illuminati Pyramid Medallion found on the back of the $1 bill. At the top you could replace the "annuit coeptis" with one of the Latin phrases already suggested (or simply Volokh Conspiracy to be less pretentious). At the bottom you could place the website address.
2.25.2005 6:44am
David P. Cavanagh (mail):
Suggestion for a t-shirt motto: "Because it's the law"
2.25.2005 8:12am
The Volokh Conspiracy
Life Among the Nematodes
2.25.2005 8:32am
Ben (mail):
I have to agree with Doug. Perhaps just "The Volokh Conspiracy" plus the url. I don't think there is a need for a motto or logo. It would just clutter up the t shirt
2.25.2005 10:10am
asg (mail):
I would definitely buy one PROVIDED it had just a small design on the front breast and a big design on the back. I can't stand t-shirts with big designs on the front.
2.25.2005 11:06am
I propose a hunter green polo shirt (or T-shirt) with the text:

"The Volokh Conspiracy
Join the Conspiracy!"

The text would be printed on the left front.

Why hunter green, you may ask? It turns out that color studies have suggested that hunter green appeals more to people with higher incomes and education than other colors do. Since that is the natural target audience for the Conspiracy, this might enable you to sell a few more.
2.25.2005 12:04pm
Russell Newquist (mail) (www):
I'd keep it extremely simple and do one of two things (or perhaps offer both):

Option 1: A white T-shirt with green letters (inverting your header) that read "The Volokh Conspiracy". Nothing else.

Option 2: As already mentioned, a white T-shirt with a green box with the words in white inside of it.

That's it. I wouldn't do anything more than that, except perhaps putting a web address on there. But if it were me, I wouldn't even do that.

Why? Because if somebody sees a shirt like that, the first thing out of their mouth is going to be, "What's the Volokh Conspiracy?" Or if they don't talk to you, they're still going to wonder. And I'd leave out the web address, because anybody who's likely to actually read the site is probably internet savvy enough to look it up on Google anyway.
2.25.2005 12:16pm
Speedwell (mail):
Not everyone can wear a polo shirt (I have size issues in mind). Hunter green is terrific. (That gives me an idea for a tagline: "Green is good.")

A kelly green mug with writing/logo reversed out in white would be a standout.
2.25.2005 12:20pm
Anderson (mail) (www):
I'd favor a t-shirt with a lowercase sans serif font, "the volokh conspiracy."

I favor this because ideally, viewers should wonder whether it's a band, or a political party, or what.

Maybe with "" on the back.
2.25.2005 12:32pm
I really like the idea of working the phrase "unindicted co-conspirator" into it somehow.
2.25.2005 1:40pm
Mike G. in San Diego (mail):
"Veni, vidi, volokh!" ?

And I second the eye-in-the-pyramid logo idea.
2.25.2005 3:27pm
Mark Eckenwiler:
The t-shirt should read as follows:

The Volokh Conspiracy

Another Man's Lyric
2.25.2005 3:38pm
I think the tagline should be "Blogging is not a crime". But forget the t-shirt. I think The Volokh Conspiracy would be a great band name.
2.25.2005 3:56pm
I've bought stuff from cafe press before. It was a t-shirt with a junky iron-on type transfer. It didn't survive more than a few washings before it was totally unreadable. Unless they offer a different type of shirt, I'd stay away from them.
2.25.2005 3:57pm
NickM (mail) (www):
I suggest a white t-shirt vith the header on the front and the following saying on the back (in black letters):

Got trackbacks?
2.25.2005 6:53pm
Thomas (mail):
Some of these ideas are very good. In particular, I like Anderson's suggestion.

However, if a slogan is needed, how about: "Standing athwart history saying 'However,'."
2.26.2005 10:20am
erp (mail):
Good quality cotton t-shirt just slighty off-white, very light cream color. Font: Dark green, but not too dark or it will look like black. Use same font as webpage banner.


The Volokh Conspiracy (green banner &white font like website)

Conspiring for Justice and the American Way (green font)


Blogging at its Best. (green font) (green font)
2.26.2005 11:52am
Crime & Federalism (mail) (www):
The t-shirt should be fun, even kind of dorky. Here's what I envision.

A white t-shirt. In the center of the t-shirt, orange-bordered green lettering saying "VC." The "VC" should be large enough to be noticeable, but not so large that it's obnoxious. Below the VC, this tagline: "Proving that academics do it better."
2.26.2005 4:14pm
Abigail (mail):
Black t-shirt
Green logo and letters in white:

The Volokh Conspiracy. the whole thing
2.27.2005 12:09am
david (mail):
VC: It's not just the good ideas, it's the law
2.27.2005 4:35pm
Peter (mail) (www):
I want to propose that whoever buys a VC shirt wear it when they go to the airport. Even law profs have fantasies!
3.1.2005 2:39am