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You Can’t Say That on Television: The Super Bowl Brand

super-bowl-2012Let’s play a quick game. Every time you hear the words “big game” during Super Bowl commercials this coming Sunday, take a drink.

Whether or not you’ve been tuned into it in the past, you’ll notice as soon as you pay attention. Thanks to an airtight trademark, the only ones who have reign to say those two magical words in serequential order are those belonging to the National Football League (NFL). Some say the approach is genius. After all, the best of the best brands clamor to buy up advertising space during the most watched game of the year. But others argue they may be taking it just a little too far. The words on the forbidden list include:

  • Super Bowl
  • Super Sunday
  • NFL, AFC or NFC
  • National Football Leage
  • American Football Conference
  • National Football Conference
  • Any full team name

Words you will most likely hear to sidestep this trademark:

  • The Big Game
  • The Professional Football Championship Game
  • Names of the cities of the competing teams

What do you think? Brilliant way to build exclusivity and elitism in a brand or way too over-the-top?