trademark drawbacks


Today a friend of mine who is not so much into soccer, asked me why the commentators on television are always talking about the “FIFA WM 2006”, and went on asking, if there was another soccer world cup besides the FIFA one. My friend drew parallels to heavyweight boxing, the other sports monster spectacular, where there are different more or less global associations, each claiming to organize the world championships. WBC, WBA, IBF, WBO plus another dozen or so, among which only the WBU has some significance in the UK. The result of this rivalries is that there are several world champions at a given time, or, seen the other way round, none. Now, there is only one soccer world cup, but I guess it is impossible to register ‘soccer world cup’ as a trademark, because it is deemed to be common speech. So the FIFA registered ‘FIFA WM 2006’—no fault until here. The fault lies in my opinion in the pressure the FIFA exerts upon the media to say and write ‘FIFA WM 2006’ whenever they want to talk about the soccer world cup. For my friend the soccer world cup lost some of its uniqueness that way.