Stations Can’t Use the Term “Super Bowl” in Advertising/Promotions Without NFL Permission

Just a reminder that stations cannot use the term “Super Bowl” in any advertising, promotions, or contests without permission from the NFL. The NFL has copyrighted the name and will litigate if the name is used without permission. As noted, communications attorney David Oxenford stated in his recent blog:

“Given the value of the Super Bowl franchise, it is not surprising that the NFL is extremely aggressive in protecting its golden goose from anything it views as unauthorized efforts to trade off the goodwill associated with the mark or the game. Accordingly, with the coin toss almost upon us, advertisers should take special care before publishing or engaging in advertising or other promotional activities that refer to the Super Bowl.”

The same holds true for the divisional and league championships. You may use such terms as the “Big Game” or the “February 13th Game.

You can see David Oxenford’s analysis on the use of the term Super Bowl (and what you can and cannot say) here.

Our friends at the law firm of Lerman Senter have also provided an analysis here.