The logo of the World Cup on your own homepage: enjoying the matches instead of fighting over trademark issuesJun 9th, 2010 | By Ayenegbe Stephen | Category: Articles in English | Trackback URL
It is only a few days to go until the World Cup in distant South Africa will kick off. Many of us are already giddy with excitement. Sports fans are looking forward to breathtaking matches between competing top stars from all over the globe and revellers are hoping for a repetition of the four-week ‘Summer Tale’ of 2006. Companies from all industries see their chance in making profit from this soccer euphoria. As a true sports fan it is a matter of course that one’s own website should bear reference to the ultimate event highlight in 2010. The easiest way, of course, would be to incorporate the official World Cup logo in your site. But is this possible without further ado?
The answer to this question would be quite unanimous when asked at the headquarters of the International Federation of Football Associations in Zurich: it would be ‘no’! The official logo of the World Cup is a registered trademark of the FIFA. Third parties are not steadfastly refused to use it, though: exclusive contracts allow sponsors and licensees to use the FIFA trademarks subject to carefully defined conditions. However, when using the logo or name without a licence, conflict is preordained. Just like other major companies, the FIFA is not in a playful mood when it comes to copyright theft and does not hesitate to have their lawyers deal with the issue. Some fans running their own blog had to experience this fact themselves during the last World Cup.
What next? You could refrain from making a World Cup statement on your website. But wait! Necessity is the mother of invention. True to this proverb, the web community ‘contator’ encouraged creative minds to design logos and submit them. Subsequently, users could vote for their favourite design which can now be downloaded at the contator site and used without restriction. The only condition is that the logo mustn’t be used to cast a shadow on the World Cup, the competitions or the designers. Before publishing the logo on your own website, you should be aware, though, that you are still in a twilight zone when using the free logo. contator recommends bloggers and website administrators to use the version without the text below the logo in order to avoid a possible misconstruction of trademark law. Some lawyers consider stating the name of the host country a critical issue. In plain English: have 2010 under the logo instead of ‘South Africa 2010′ or drop the text at all.
Let’s conclude with a personal tip: if you don’t like the unofficial logo with the typical South African vuvuzela blowing horns which was most popular among the users, there is an alternative at the website of ‘Florian-R’. The ‘Winner in Our Hearts’ logo can be used without restrictions, too, of course. And now get out your jersey and pick the best seat for a great view at the screen at the fan area. Let the competitions begin!
- #tc10: Is the trademark alive or is it dead and gone yet?
- Communication for free and without limits
- Dropout report: ‘Twitter is boring!’