I have written about the NFL on many occasions on this blog, including their over-protective actions regarding use of the SUPER BOWL® name by others.
Now the NFL has objected to registration of SUPERB OWL (see what they did there!) for running events from The Night Run. One of their specimens of use submitted to the USPTO is displayed below.
The SUPERB OWL application Serial No. 86339567 can be found here.
The NFL’s opposition, TTAB proceeding No. 91222783, can be found here.
The NFL’s claim here may not be so crazy, but it is worth it? Is the negative publicity worthwhile to stop one small running event? Is their potential damage to the NFL’s brand by this event and trademark? Is there a Streisand Effect potential for the NFL? Of course, there are questions on the other side too: is it really worth the expense and hassle of dealing with the NFL? did they seek legal advice before adopting the name and applying with the USPTO?
I’m really not sure what to make of this one, except to note that it indicates that whole mess about the NFL’s enforcement of the SUPER BOWL trademark is not going away any time soon, unless the NFL makes a major change of course and realizes that its brand is safe and most of the situations it objection to are harmless.
Stephen Colbert once had a great piece about using “Superb Owl” as well. See video here.