Thursday, January 10, 2008

Rudy's "Big Game"

Ever notice commercials and promos this time of year referring to the Super Bowl as some variation of a "Big Game" instead of using the actual words "Super Bowl?"

As pointed out in an article two years ago in the Washington Post, this is because: advertisers cannot say "Super Bowl" or show NFL team logos unless they've paid millions of dollars to the NFL, they've learned to weasel around such restrictions, inventing such generic, non-actionable concepts as "the Big Game."

While the article notes: "None of those restrictions, however, applies to news organizations, whose use of copyrighted terms are legally protected," DC's Hotline On Call this morning posted the script for a new advertisement GOP Presidential hopeful Rudy Giuliani is running in Florida radio markets.

Script for “Super Bowl”:

Voice Over: “With pundits and politicos handicapping the campaign like the Super Bowl, it’s easy to lose sight of what’s at stake. An economy in peril. A country at war. A future uncertain. The media loves process. Talking heads love chatter. But Florida has a chance to turn down the noise. And show the world that leadership is what really matters.”

Third (state) down. 47 to go.

Says the Post:
Even though the NFL has been chasing big-game ambushers for decades, the practice "continues to be a big problem," says Gary Gertzog, the league's general counsel and senior vice president of business affairs. As the game "gets bigger and bigger," he says, marketers "want to borrow our equity." That's a polite, lawyerly way of saying "cash in on the NFL's brand name without paying for it."
Anyone vaguely familiar with Federal Election Commission laws, knows they are ever evolving. While this doesn't trigger FEC problems, could NFL big wigs, some of whom likely support Rudy's would be general election foes, come down on America's Mayor?

Then again, anyone on the Do Not Call registry who's received automated campaign calls, knows politicians have a way of exempting themselves from certain marketing restrictions.

No comments: