Just how much is enough for the NFL?
The New Orleans Saints are on their way to the Super Bowl, and their fans are taking their "Who Dat" chant with them. However, the NFL says fans can't buy anything with the phrase on it because they now say THEY own the phrase.
The NFL asserted rights to the phrase earlier this week through the Florida Department of State, and it has issued cease-and-desist orders against New Orleans vendors who sell Saints memorabilia adorned with the wording. According to the Wall Street Journal, the NFL informed vendors that using the phrase is likely to "confuse the purchasing public into believing that your items" are sponsored by the NFL.
New Orleans locals are outraged and suspicious. The NFL, they contend, never cared about the quirky chant when the football team was dubbed the 'Aints a few decades ago, or after it was ousted from its home stadium in 2005 by Hurricane Katrina and finished 3-13.
Of course, this isn't a new thing with the NFL.
By now, the commercials have hit the airwaves talking about "The Big Game." And by now, you know which "Big Game" they are talking about. Why don't they just come out and call it the Super Bowl like everybody else?
Because the NFL says they can't.
I came across a blog entry from a few years back from Copyfutures, a site dealing with copyrights and advertising.
According to the site, the NFL holds the property rights to all phrases dealing with the Super Bowl for advertising purposes, which means you can't say or print:
- Super Bowl
- Super Sunday
- The Super Bowl logo
- “NFL”, “AFC”, or “NFC”
- National Football League
- American Football Conference
- National Football Conference
- Team nicknames such as Steelers or Cardinals
You can say "the Big Game", "The Professional Football Championship", "Pittsburgh", and "Arizona".
Click Here for how the NFL is able to control the uses of these phrases, considered their property.
When planning your party or get together for the "Annual World Championship Game of Football on the Sabbath", keep in mind that the NFL may be lurking around the corner.