Topic: Ambush marketing
Where: Switzerland, Brazil
When: April 2013
Law stated as at: 2 May 2013
FIFA, the international governing body for football (that’s “soccer” for our North American readers), has issued revised guidance for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil on the use of its trade marks.
Reminiscent of the guidance issued by LOCOG for the 2012 Olympics, FIFA’s guidelines include visual examples of practices they’d regard as permissible and impermissible. They also list out various protected terms and images.
Why this matters:
Inevitably, guidance issued by organising committees of sporting events tends to suggest an interpretation of the legal position that’s relatively favourable to the organisers. So while the guidance states that “World Cup” is a protected term, it fails to mention that the trade mark – in the UK at least – is only registered in relation to “Football boots, football shirts, football shorts, football socks, football clothing; all included in Class 25.”
Other expressions, such as BRAZIL 2014, have much wider trade mark protection.
The April 2013 guidelines can be found here.