NFL Tackles a Church Super Bowl Party

Kent Shaffer —  February 1, 2007

Intellectual property is a serious topic but unfamiliar to many. According to The Christian Post, Fall Creek Baptist Church (Indianapolis, IN) learned about it the hard way when the National Football League ordered them to cease and desist intended plans on their upcoming Super Bowl party because of trademark violations.

The 2 Part Initial Problem:

  1. Use of the Super Bowl’s trademark name
    (just the words “Super Bowl”)
  2. A fee to attend

Fall Creek offered to remove the words “Super Bowl” from all promotions, but the NFL still objected stating:

The church cannot project the game onto such a large screen. They may only hold the event if they use a TV no bigger than 55 inches.

And according to Rachel L. Margolies of the NFL:

We are consistent in refusing the use of our game broadcasts in connection with events that promote a message, no matter the content.

Intellectual property can be a confusing issue but is certainly worth learning.

Kent Shaffer

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I live in an RV with my wife and 2 kids and work with OpenChurch.com to help Christians collaborate and build a global Church library of free, open content.