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Old 01-30-2014, 08:34 AM
Acsenray is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: U.S.A.
Posts: 36,898
Originally Posted by Amateur Barbarian View Post
I'll buy that as an observed point but not as any kind of answer. The NFL has been very aggressive about what it sees as misuse; a 200-year-old newspaper should be able to put a "Superbowl Countdown" on its page without fear of legal retribution.

So yes, the NFL has even the media running scared on this, even if it's caution and not actual supported law. Why do they care and why do even news agencies bend to this bizarre demand? I mean, no one would think twice about a news report that said the robber ordered a Whopper before robbing the place; BK is not going to sue them into insolvency for not calling it The Big Sandwich.
The media is not "running scared." Not a single 200-year-old newspaper is avoiding use of the term "Superbowl" (or "Olympics," for that matter) because they are afraid of legal action from the N.F.L. Using a trademark in connection with news reporting is not infringement. It's called nominative fair use of a trademark. Every 200-year-old newspaper has known that for 200 years. The N.F.L. knows it. It's simply not happening.

If any particular newspaper chooses to use some other term, like "the Big Game," in its news coverage, then they're doing it for some other reason. Period.

(I emphasize news there, because it's conceivable that a newspaper can be working with an advertiser to promote the advertiser's goods or services, in which case, the nominative fair use defense might not apply.)