Infographic | Trademarks 101: super bowl exclusivity

10 febrero, 2024
super bowl
football

Arguably the most important sports event in the U.S.A., the Super Bowl moves billions of dollars, mainly through advertising.

The National Football League (NFL), organizers of the event, have created and grown the brand of the Super Bowl to what it is today.

trademark

THE
SUPER BOWL
TRADEMARK

in 1969

In 1969, the NFL trademarked “Super Bowl”. Since then, it has made a conscious effort to enforce this trademark.

Even small businesses that have used “Super Bowl” to advertise watch-parties, have received cease and desist letters from NFL lawyers.

shield

In 1969, the NFL trademarked “Super Bowl”.

Famous cases include that of 2007, when the NFL sent a cease-and-desist letter to a church in Indianapolis, where they were charging 3 USD to watch the event in the church and were using the term “Super Bowl” to advertise it.

stars

protecting
the brand’s
reputation

use of the
«super bowl»

The NFL argues that using “Super Bowl” or any of the items protected by the NFL, might make consumers assume that that they are endorsing said events or products, when that is not the case.

Critics highlight that not many people believe a small bar, holding a “Super Bowl” watch-party, is sponsored by the NFL.

alert

In any case, it could imply illegal ambush marketing and free ride over the mark’s reputation

trophee

using «big game»
as an alternative

the «big game»

This strong enforcement of the “Super Bowl” trademark has made smaller businesses refer to this event as the “Big Game”, to avoid any legal repercussions.

contract
The “Big Game”, to avoid any legal repercussions.

Our Experts

Maria Alejandra Pava

María A. Pava

Partner |
Trademarks Director

Luciana Moreno

Luciana Moreno

Trademarks
Leader

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