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Will Your Super Bowl Party Anger the Copyright Gods?

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 4 years ago | from the too-many-weekend-lawyers dept.

Television 560

garg0yle writes "According to some folks, watching the Super Bowl on a television bigger than 55 inches is illegal. Is this true? Yes and no — long story short, if you're in a private residence you're probably okay, but if you're running a sports bar you may technically have to negotiate a license with the NFL. Just don't charge for food, or call it a 'Super Bowl' party, since the term itself is copyright."

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Old news (4, Informative)

eihab (823648) | more than 4 years ago | (#30984880)

We talked about this two years ago [slashdot.org] . Copyright still sucks, nothing new here.

P.S.: Amazingly, that was on February, 2nd 2008. I wonder if we will be talking about Yahoo considering an alliance with Google [slashdot.org] tomorrow!

Re:Old news (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985244)

I'm having a Super Bowl Birthday Party.

I'm using my 60" TV and inviting 40 people.
We'll all sing Happy Birthday Super Bowl (slightly late).
I'm serving home-made McNuggets and KFC style fried chicken.
I'll be charging for food.
I'm using a HD PVR to record and re-broadcast it over my open WiFi hotspot.
I'm also streaming it live over the internet to anyone who wants to watch.

oh.. what was TFA about?

Re:Old news (3, Informative)

v1 (525388) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985426)

I'm also streaming it live over the internet to anyone who wants to watch.

I advise you to also time shift it and remove the commercials. All but the "superbowl commercials" of course.

Re:Old news (1)

Montezumaa (1674080) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985550)

I believe that the NFL is gearing up the black helicopters and heading to your house. I should know, as I was hired to kil....re-educate you.

Re:Old news (4, Interesting)

Kpau (621891) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985262)

Sometimes I think it will be the NFL that finally breaks the camel's back of copyright mutation rather than the MPAA/RIAA idiots. The NFL takes the farce of "intellectual property" to such absurd levels that even congressmen might be able to see the lack of clothing.

Re:Old news (4, Insightful)

sopssa (1498795) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985456)

To be fair, it does make sense for NFL. The summary is little bit bad worded, but you are perfectly fine to watch it at home with friends, on any size TV, as long as isn't considered public place like a sports bar, church or workplace and you do not explicitly charge for viewing the game. You can however ask for compensation on foods and drinks.

I don't think it's that hard to see what is considered a home and a public gathering place. It's not that stupid for NFL (or any other sports league or movie studio) to ask for compensation if their content is being shown on a public place to many people and they're profiting from it.

Re:Old news (5, Insightful)

Kryptonian Jor-El (970056) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985576)

You've got to be kidding me!

You pay your cable bill and you watch the advertisements, don't you?

If I want to have people over and charge them to watch my TV, its not the NFL's business. Now, if the NFL wants to buy me a TV and a house to watch the Superbowl©, then I'll let them restrict who may enter my home, and at what price.

Re:Old news (4, Insightful)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985564)

I hope so.

The HDMI handshaking makes the audio drop intermittently on my new TV when combined with my new HD PVR from my cable company. Pirated content plays flawlessly over the same HDMI connections.

On the upside, it is going to save me a ton of cash, since all I'll have to buy is a bigger HDD for my Linux box and a media player.

Re:Old news (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985608)

Actually, everyone saw the lack of clothing years ago after the Janet Jackson Nipplegate incident.

Your Honor... (3, Interesting)

headkase (533448) | more than 4 years ago | (#30984902)

They are being idiots, please restore some sanity.

Re:Your Honor... (4, Insightful)

exabrial (818005) | more than 4 years ago | (#30984928)

A better choice, for a myriad of reasons, is to not vote for an incumbent this November.

I can dream.

Re:Your Honor... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985498)

A better choice, for a myriad of reasons, is to not vote for an incumbent this November.

Hear, hear. Unless they're a Democrat, then vote for them. Better the party of incompetence than the party of evil.

Re:Your Honor... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985598)

Barack "The Sociopathic Liar" Obama?

Who says one day that we should have cooperation and bipartisanship, and the next day compares those who oppose his plans with those who were against ending slavery? And says that the opposition is 100% and utterly manufactured by 'Un-American' special interest groups ?

Fuck Obama, and fuck the evil, sociopathic, manipulative, lying Democrats. In the skull.

Re:Your Honor... (4, Funny)

paiute (550198) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985556)

Old political truism: Every Congressman is a pork-seeking self-centered bought-and-paid-for idiot. Except for my representative. He's okay.

The NFL at its best (3, Insightful)

CorporateSuit (1319461) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985134)

Face it, the NFL are brilliant. They are not about football. They are about revenue. They had two goals in mind when setting out on their broadcasting endeavor:

a) Sell high-cost adspace
b) Get people to care about the adspace

Now you hear people always saying "I watch the superbowl for the commercials!" Mission A-Ccomplished NFL. Was that enough? It's never enough. So the last 10 years have been their attempt to make more money by becoming some of the biggest douchebags in the IP industry.

"That's the thing about greed, Arch, it's blind. And it doesn't know when to stop" -- Lenny Cole

Can't copyright a term (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30984912)

...call it a 'Super Bowl' party, since the term itself is copyright.

Summary fail. Perhaps you mean trademark?

A recurring joke, perhaps. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985098)

Indeed. It isn't first time that /. submitters and editors have made that mistake. Or the second. Or the third... In fact, I am pretty sure that ScuttleMonkey has done this before, several times.

On one hand, I am inclined to think that this is editors' inside joke. You know, repeating that error and watching how many people begin complaining about that isntead of discussing the subject. On the other hand, /. summaries concerning intellectual property are hilariously wrong more often than not (Especially when it comes to patents. As a rule of thumb, the thing being patented is certainly not what /. summary claims it to be, which is just a summary of someone's misinterpration of the abstract) so I can't tell for sure.

BYOSBL (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985136)

Bring Your Own Super Bowl License.

Re:Can't copyright a term (2, Informative)

hedwards (940851) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985520)

Which is completely unenforceable, since you're allowed to use trademarks for the purpose of referring to the item. Meaning that they might get upset about you calling it a "Super Bowl party" but if you have a party where you watch the "Super Bowl" there isn't really anything they can do about it.

God (2, Funny)

killmenow (184444) | more than 4 years ago | (#30984922)

I hope so.

Trademark (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30984940)

Just don't charge for food, or call it a 'Super Bowl' party, since the term itself is copyright.

You keep using that word, I do not think it means what you think it means.

The term itself...? (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) | more than 4 years ago | (#30984942)

Just don't charge for food, or call it a 'Super Bowl' party, since the term itself is copyright."

I'd like to hear a lawyer stand up and say that with a straight face. Trademarked? Possibly. Copyright? Not likely. And even it was a registered mark, I fail to see what food has to do with anything, or how it would be actionable unless the rightsholder is organising similar events that might be confused with whatever private viewing we're talking about here.

Re:The term itself...? (5, Insightful)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985052)

I do know that a couple of years ago, media organizations stopped referring to events they were sponsoring as "Super Bowl Random Event" but instead started to refer to them as "Big Game Random Event". Frequently they would make a point about not being able to use Super Bowl to refer to the event because of licensing issues with the NFL. At the time I thought that the NFL was shooting themselves in the foot. What makes the Super Bowl such a big money maker for them is its cultural ubiquity in the U.S.. If there are not a lot of events planned around the game, people will pay less attention to the game. If too many of the events planned around the game are "Big Game" events rather than "Super Bowl" events, it will diminish the value of the words "Super Bowl".

Re:The term itself...? (5, Informative)

Megahard (1053072) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985586)

And then the NFL wanted to trademark the Big Game [slashdot.org] . Schools with their own Big Games got upset. The insanity continues.

Re:The term itself...? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985062)

when you start charging for food, you move from being a collection of friends to a sport bar, and sports bars don't get fair use.

Re:The term itself...? (1)

sopssa (1498795) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985182)

You can ask a "charge" for food

Okay, not completely. You cannot make a "direct charge" to "see or hear the transmission," though you can apparently ask friends to cover the cost of food and drink. You also cannot further transmit the broadcast "to the public," so diverting a live video stream onto the Internet and streaming it to the world is right out. Otherwise, you're fine.

Re:The term itself...? (2, Informative)

JNSL (1472357) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985332)

when you start charging for food, you move from being a collection of friends to a sport bar, and sports bars don't get fair use.

This is wrong. In a lot of ways.

First, as has been said many times in these comments already, we're dealing with TM when using the term "Superbowl" and copyright when we dealing with showing it on TV. Though you probably don't know it, and besides the fact that a bar would also have to serve alcohol, the statutory exception you're referring to is an exception to the copyright rights. Certain kinds of establishments are allowed to violate the holder's copyright (and here I mean the prima facie violation of a section 106 right). And I believe I'm remembering this correctly, but the size of the TV's doesn't matter. It's the size of the establishment and the number of TV's.

Second, sports bars can get fair use. Whether a court finds a fair use depends on a balance of assorted factors, only one of which is whether the organization is for profit.

Go look at the NFL versus Louisiana over Who dat (4, Interesting)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985090)

http://content.usatoday.com/communities/gameon/post/2010/02/halftime-who-dat-whos-greedy-the-nfl/1 [usatoday.com]

You missed the one important part, anywhere there is money involved there will be claims. The NFL is claiming ownership of a fan derived saying, let alone one where most of it has been part of the dialect

Never under estimate money, lawyers, and stupidity, combined.

Re:The term itself...? (1)

JNSL (1472357) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985180)

Yeah, the big thing here is that nobody is going to be confused.

I'm also trying to figure out how viewing on that size of a screen could possibly be a copyright violation. Off the top of my head, I can't think of any exemptions like this. Not that it'd surprise me, since there are all sorts of special interest exemptions. Hell, maybe the NFL got one specially placed! The tax code [501(c)(6)] has one carved out for professional football leagues. Not that any exemption would matter anyway. It'd totally be against the NFL's best interests to litigate.

Re:The term itself...? (4, Funny)

tsalmark (1265778) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985212)

My Bowl Party is going to be Super. so I'm having a Super "Bowl Party" not a "Super Bowl" Party. Entertainment Lawyers can go-for-a-Coffee as far as I'm concerned.

Re: The term itself...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985216)

You missed the point. The argument is irrelevant because the NFL can sue any random sports bar or pub into oblivion. Therefore the term "Super Bowl" in any application is solely owned by the NFL. So it is ruled by the most powerful court in the US, money.

Re: The term itself...? (1)

JNSL (1472357) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985432)

Solely owned != sole use

Re:The term itself...? (1)

Grond (15515) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985448)

Yeah, it's definitely trademarked, but the issue isn't really food; it's the game itself and the viewing thereof. Registered trademark #0882283 from 1969 is for "Entertainment services in the nature of football exhibitions." Arguably a game watching party is a football exhibition, particularly where there's a cover fee of some kind or where the party is purely a commercial venture.

If that's not close enough there's registered trademark #3343714 from 2007, which is for "Television broadcasting services; television transmission services; distribution of television programming to cable and satellite television systems; distribution of television programs for others..." etc, etc. Arguably a Super Bowl Watching Party would fall under "distribution of television programs for others."

What super bowl party? (5, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | more than 4 years ago | (#30984978)

This is news for nerds, remember?

Re:What super bowl party? (1)

fatherjoecode (1725040) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985044)

Do you mean going to parties or watching the Super Bowl?

Re:What super bowl party? (4, Funny)

Hatta (162192) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985110)

Nerds have LAN parties, not Super Bowl parties.

Re:What super bowl party? (1)

Em Emalb (452530) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985458)

No they don't. Geeks have lan parties. Nerds have wedgie parties...by themselves.

Re:What super bowl party? (1)

shoehornjob (1632387) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985078)

Meh the nfl sucks. Since we seem to be locked in an endless debate about copyright, trademarks etc I can see why it would be posted here but they still suck.

Re:What super bowl party? (4, Informative)

gman003 (1693318) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985086)

There are sports nerds. The guys who memorize every stat for everyone on all thirty-something teams. I may not partake in that, but I will recognize it as something nerd. Of course, we are both going to be sued by the NFL for using the words in the comment title, so who cares? See you in court, co-defendant.

Re:What super bowl party? (3, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985388)

Sports nerds are generally called "jocks".

Re:What super bowl party? (3, Insightful)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985500)

Sports nerds are generally called "jocks".

No, that is not true "jocks" are the ones who actually play the sports. While some jocks are also sports nerds, most sports nerds are no closer to being actual jocks than a stereotypical geek is.

Re:What super bowl party? (0, Troll)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985584)

There are sports nerds

That's an oxymoron and is completely incorrect. The people you refer to are called "jocks", as in "jock strap".

The guys who memorize every stat for everyone on all thirty-something teams.

Nerds do not memorize meaningless trivia without good reason.

Re:What super bowl party? (1)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985176)

Watching the Super Bowl is pointless because the San Diego Chargers aren't playing in it. If you recall, their "pro-bowl" kicker took bribes from Indianapolis and missed 3 kicks in a row during the previous game against the New York Jets - kicks that would have won that game. If the Chargers won that game they would have played the Indianapolis Colts and won because they have a flawless record against Peyton manning.

But yeah, fuck the NFL. It's only fun if my team wins ;)

Re:What super bowl party? (2, Funny)

Hatta (162192) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985230)

Who shot who in the what now?

Re:What super bowl party? (1)

XPeter (1429763) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985310)

Oh please, Mark Sanchez and Rex Ryan smacked that ass ;)

Re:What super bowl party? (1)

badboy_tw2002 (524611) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985404)

Not all nerds are anti-social basement dwellers. Not all nerds fit into the same narrow stereotypes. Some of us are into radios, computers, rocketry, table top gaming, etc. Some of us (gasp) even like "normal" gatherings and activities like sports. Super Bowl parties happen to be one of these things, and the story wasn't even close to "what are you doing for the Super Bowl" but a conversation about IP and copyrights, which are certainly on-topic around these parts. Stop perpetuating a stereotype and broaden your mind a little.

Re:What super bowl party? (1)

sunderland56 (621843) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985418)

The nerds will create a massive video wall constructed of 40" flat screens, to circumvent the 55" limitation....

Re:What super bowl party? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985522)

This is news for nerds, remember?

Of course. We're going to judge the cheerleaders and the commercials.

And since New Orleans is involved, we're expecting a lot of beads & boobies.

Re:What super bowl party? (4, Funny)

Waffle Iron (339739) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985532)

This is news for nerds, remember?

Well, I'm going to be recording the Superbowl on my Linux-hosted Mythtv box. Then I'll use the automatic commercial flagging feature to skip over the game so I can see the ads.

Can I call it... (5, Funny)

jomegat (706411) | more than 4 years ago | (#30984998)

Can I call it a Superb Owl party?

Who! Whooooo! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985026)

(text is in subject line)

Re:Can I call it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985284)

Can I call it a Superb Owl party?

Does Borland still hold a trademark on OWL?

Re:Can I call it... (3, Funny)

thestudio_bob (894258) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985440)

Awesome! How about some more anagrams....

Blowers Up
Bowlers Up
Below Spur
Bowel Spur
Elbow Spur
Ruble Swop
Blew Pours
Superb Low
Rubes Plow
Blowup Res
Blows Pure
Bowls Pure
Blow Super
Pub Slower
Bro We Plus
Bus Per Owl
Super Blow (Awesome)

Not if the owl is over 52 inches (2, Funny)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985442)

All your owls are belong to us.

Re:Can I call it... (1)

tsstahl (812393) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985444)

Be prepared for a Harry Potter flash mob at your house.

Re:Can I call it... (1)

iwaybandit (1632765) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985542)

Only if the party takes place at Hooters.

Re:Can I call it... (1)

fyoder (857358) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985578)

Can I call it a Superb Owl party?

Bloody brilliant, though there is a small risk that someone might be disappointed if they attended expecting to see a superb owl. And possibly embarrassed if they came dressed as one.

Ok NFL, I can take a hint (3, Insightful)

cstec (521534) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985002)

We won't be watching. On any TV.

Re:Ok NFL, I can take a hint (0, Flamebait)

bsDaemon (87307) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985124)

Frankly, I wouldn't watch even if the broadcast the game under Creative Commons. I have no interest in American Football at all. Frankly, I'd be surprised if more than 40-50% of Slashdotters were planning on watching. Of course, I don't think most people actually watch it -- they just have it in the background as an excuse to drink beer and eat nachos... (as if people really need an excuse for that).

Re:Ok NFL, I can take a hint (1)

josteos (455905) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985208)

I'm an advertisers dream: I Tivo the ads and skip over the annoying 3 hours of football.

Re:Ok NFL, I can take a hint (2, Interesting)

bsDaemon (87307) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985372)

That's another thing I don't get. We spend so much time and effort avoiding advertisement, inventing technology to avoid having to see it, then once a year, when companies are spending millions of dollars for a 30 second ad that they'll show probably just that one time, everybody is like, "z0mg !!!!!!11!!one gotta watch the ads!!" That's some ol' bullshit right there.

Hey, advertisers -- you really want to get people's attention? Rather than waste money on a super bowl ad, rent out some cheap billboard slots in major markets saying something like "rather than spend $15,000,000 on a 30-second TV commercial, we donated $14,000,000 to Haiti instead". Or, even better... just do it and not tell us about it because doing the right thing isn't about getting recognition for it.

Re:Ok NFL, I can take a hint (2, Insightful)

c0d3g33k (102699) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985490)

Frankly, I wouldn't watch even if the broadcast the game under Creative Commons. I have no interest in American Football at all.

I have no interest in your personal taste in sports at all. Perhaps you have a point more relevant to the discussion that you would care to share?

Oh good, more misinformation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985014)

I'm not going to RTFA if the submitter can't even tell the difference between copyright and trademark -- in this case, of 'Super Bowl' -- after reading the article.

I'm going to have a fruit party. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985022)

And we will have fruit in BIG BOWLS!

and not more than 8 speakers - mute/CC (1)

RichMan (8097) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985034)

Just turn the sound off.
You have to love and clauses that allow one simple variance to void the whole thing.

"Just don't charge for food" (1)

jpate (1356395) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985082)

Is BYOB charging for food?

NFL soft on churches (-1, Flamebait)

Animats (122034) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985156)

The NFL used to crack down on churches for having pay-per-view football watching parties. But they've backed off on churches. They're afraid to take on religion. Wimps.

As for sports bars, they're a business mooching off someone else's content. Of course they should pay.

Heinlein, in "Stranger in a Strange Land", saw this future of megachurches. There's a scene where a church leader mentions that they have a big screen projection TV for football events. (Heinlein also described megachurches with casinos, but so far, that's only in Vegas. [larknews.com] )

Re:NFL soft on churches (1)

jwinster (1620555) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985406)

This is getting even closer to the UFC's pay-per-view model of TV. In order for bars to show these events they have to pay thousands of dollars, and in order to make it worth it they'd have to black their windows (to stop people just watching from the street) and charge everyone cover to get in. I don't think the super bowl organizers really want this because of the negative impact on ad viewership. Fact is bars are already paying for the content and for the super bowl they want to double dip for some bonus money without making it pay-per-view, which isn't really fair.

Re:NFL soft on churches (5, Insightful)

c0d3g33k (102699) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985606)

As for sports bars, they're a business encouraging a large number of willing viewers to watch someone else's advertising revenue supported content. Of course they should be compensated.

There. Fixed that for ya.

Oh well. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985166)

The screen will be 9 ft diagonal. So technically, yes we will be in violation. Oh well. I don't feel too bad. I'm not losing any sleep. Its an unenforceable stupid, greedy rule.

No 7.1 sound? (1)

mtmra70 (964928) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985168)

While this is really moot in the home, its funny how they pretty much make it wrong to watch the Superbowl in 6.1, 7.1 or 9.1 home theater systems.

Re:No 7.1 sound? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985376)

It would need to be broadcast in such to watch it that way. I think what you mean is watch it "with", aka setting your 6.1 surround sound to blend the surround channels for a rear channel.

I've gotten around this... (3, Funny)

jnaujok (804613) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985184)

You see, I'm having a party where I'll be serving soup.

It will be served in my wife's favorite dishware.

And my son will be serving it when I tell him to.

It will start during the daylight hours.

So I told all my friends to come over for a "Soup her bowl, Son - Day Party".

Re:I've gotten around this... (4, Funny)

steelfood (895457) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985398)

I'll let you call me son if I get to soup your wife's bowl at the party.

Re:I've gotten around this... (3, Insightful)

pympdaddyc (586298) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985546)

I'll let him call me wife if his son gets to soup my bowl at the party

Re:I've gotten around this... (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985616)

You know, out of a weird sense of curiosity I babbelfished (ok, Google Translate not actually Babble-fish) that to Spanish and back and it got REALLY weird:

I'll let my wife call if your child comes into my bowl of soup at the party

That deserves punishment (1)

presidenteloco (659168) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985516)

Yes well, I found a feather from a Great Snowy Owl
in my Canadian back yard, so invited some friends
over to look at it.
email subject:

"Superb owl part, eh!"

At this rate (1)

Arancaytar (966377) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985218)

Watching television may become illegal completely some day. Is that a bad thing?

That's debatable.

RTFA, submitter (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985232)

From the summary:

Just don't charge for food, or call it a 'Super Bowl' party, since the term itself is copyright.

The article directly contradicts both of those claims.

It's one thing to comment without RTFA, but to submit without RTFA takes a special kind of stupid.

Madness of the corporation (1)

jonfr (888673) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985256)

This is madness. Someone is going to have stop this, or it is going to mean the end of TV.

Variable screen size? (1)

durrr (1316311) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985266)

This is why you should use a projector on a moveable screen, mark the 54" spot on the floor, and then allow some douche to move the screen to the 150" mark so you can claim plausible deniability.

YES: I'll Upload The Torrent File Of The Game (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985270)

to http://www.slashdot.org/SuperBowl44.tor [slashdot.org]

Fuck The DMCA AND the NFL.

Yours In Rostov-On-Don,
K. Trout

Re:YES: I'll Upload The Torrent File Of The Game (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985320)

Watch out...they'll bring out the patRIOT act on you!

Doubtful... (4, Interesting)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985286)

...my Super Bowl party is going to involve games of Chez Geek, Hero Quest, and a Civ 4 LAN.

Anything remotely related to Football is banned.

Or say (1)

JumpDrive (1437895) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985298)

Who dat screwing with my big TV?

Not copyrighted but trademarked (4, Informative)

Grond (15515) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985306)

Just don't...call it a 'Super Bowl' party, since the term itself is copyright.

The term is not copyrighted. The term is trademarked.

The trademark status has advantages and disadvantages. Since it's been registered and in use for at least 5 years (since 1969 in fact), the trademark is much harder to invalidate, per 15 USC 1065 [cornell.edu] . Unlike copyrights, trademarks really do last forever, given proper maintenance (yes, I realize that copyrights practically last forever too, but there are trademarks that are centuries old).

Some of the disadvantages of a trademark are that the remedies are weaker (no statutory damages) and the trademark holder must police the mark. You can't license it to just anybody. You have to maintain some control over the licensed good or service, typically in the form of quality standards. You also have to go after potential infringers. Failure to do so can lead to losing the mark.

It's that last requirement that is driving the NFL's actions here (well, that and the money to be made). Whether the law in fact requires them to be as strict about it as they are is another question, one that very few people on Slashdot are really competent to answer. Whether the law should require them to be so strict, however, is a different question and one that most of us probably agree on the answer to.

As a side note, footage of individual games is copyrighted. The NFL argues that footage of the game is licensed only for private viewing and not for commercial viewing, which is how they go after sports bars and the like. I would argue that if you put your game on the public airwaves, it should be fair game for live viewing. If they want to enter into a more restrictive license with the viewer they should put the game on pay per view, a premium channel, or a cable channel at the very least.

Re:Not copyrighted but trademarked (5, Informative)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985530)

It could be worse. They could be claiming a trademark an a symbol that is thousands of years old and has been iconic and representative of a house of nobles, a city founded under their reign and an entire culture for several hundred years or the symbol of a major social organization or perhaps even an official state symbol... Oh wait, they ARE. Several restaurants in New Orleans have been sued for trademark infringement by the NFL over the use of the Fleur De' Lis, a symbol that some of them have been since before the NFL existed.

Will Your Super Bowl Party Anger the Copyright God (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985352)

"Will Your Super Bowl Party Anger the Copyright Gods?" They're hardly gods; a more precise term would be "demons" or "devils".

The bar I go to has two TVs, if they show it on the big one they'll be in violation. TFA doesn't say what happens if you give food away, as the one mentioned will (regular readers of my journal will know the name of the bar). If I remember correctly, Sanmy's Sports Bar downtown doesn't have any screens smaller than 55 inches. It seems ironic that a sports bar can't show sports! And every bar I know of sells pizza; I think Sammy's has a kitchen.

Also, how can you copyright the term "super bowl?" Is someone confusing copyright with trademark?

Its not the Super Bowl, it's "The Big Game" (1)

alen (225700) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985368)

you need a license from the NFL to call it the Super Bowl. If you haven't noticed most of the TV commercials call it The Big Game because they don't want to pay royalties to the NFL

since /. takes advertising i'm going to report this evil website so the NFL can sue you out of existance. you just cost them eleventy billion $$$$ in lost sales

Superbowl? Football? (-1, Troll)

Jawn98685 (687784) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985382)

Oh, that slow-moving American game, with the sissy padding and helmets. [Yawn...]

NFL sued a church last year (2, Interesting)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985402)

A church advertised a Super Bowl party, in which they weren't charging a dime to attend. It didn't stop the NFL lawyers from descending.

All major leagues also have the statement that not only can you not rebroadcast, but you can't disseminate or report on the game without their written, express consent.

You apparently don't have the right to talk about the game. Way to be fan-friendly.

I can't wait.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985430)

until a NFL lawyer goes crazy and starts suing people with 60"+ TVs in their room, its the best thing that could possibly happen. A nation wide freak out by "Joe the Plumber" would most likely force congress to make needed changes a broken law.

Yes. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30985476)

Yes, and I don't give a rat's ass. Satisfied?

Who Cares? (2, Insightful)

bkr1_2k (237627) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985482)

Honestly, who gives a shit? The simple solution is stop supporting some industry that will try to sue you for being a patron.

Good Luck suing my Captain Marvel Bowl Party! (1)

JoshDM (741866) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985536)

It's not as popular, but it's more magical.

Commercials? (2, Insightful)

RobVB (1566105) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985548)

Don't they make their money off commercials? Why should someone have to pay for having people over to watch those commercials? I think sports bars are much less likely to change channels during commercials to catch 3 minutes of Family Guy, so their advertisements will be more effective than in many private homes.

I think a reasonable arrangement would be if you had to report it to the NFL, saying "I'll be having an NFL party in a bar that can have 80 people inside", so the NFL can use those numbers to get more money from their advertisers. If anything, they should be paying YOU.

The atheist view (1)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 4 years ago | (#30985552)

Will Your Super Bowl Party Anger the Copyright Gods?

No gods. Just little men in suits trying to justify their petty, venal little existences as leeches on civilization's bum.

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