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Ugg boots (sometimes called uggs) are unisex sheepskin boots, made of twin-faced sheepskin with fleece on the inside and with a tanned outer surface, often with a synthetic sole. Ugg boots were first developed in Australia although the exact date is uncertain. There has been a dispute between manufacturers of ugg boots, as to whether "ugg" is a generic term and thus ineligible for trademark protection, especially in the region of origin. Deckers Outdoor Corporation holds the UGG trademark in more than 100 countries worldwide. Notable exceptions are Australia and New Zealand where the term is considered generic. The origins of the ugg boot style are disputed, with both Australia and New Zealand claiming to have been the origin of the footwear. Nevertheless, it appears that "fug boots" (thought to be a shortened form of "flying ugg boots") were used by aviators during World War I, and that they were present in rural Australia during the 1920s. While it is not clear when manufacturing started, by 1933 ugg boots were being manufactured by Blue Mountains Ugg Boots, and Mortels Sheepskin Factory were making the boots from the late 1950s. In regard to naming, it appears that ugg boots, ugh boots and ug boots have been used as generic terms for sheepskin boots in Australia and New Zealand since at least the 1970s, although individual accounts have suggested that the terms (or variations thereof) were employed earlier. The 1970s saw the emergence of advertising using the names, but Brian Smith has stated that the boots were referred to as "uggs" long before the word was trademarked, The Mortel Skeepskin Factory has been making ugg boots since 1958 with Frank Mortel claiming he named them Ugg boots after his wife commented that the first pair he made were "ugly".111
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