Newsletter Edition 18 - September 2020


Sports broadcasting and the impact on IP rights

On September 15th, Carlos Castro, senior advisor of the International Olympic Committee, and Vicente Rosenfeld, a former FIFA lawyer who served in-house during the World Cup in Brazil pointed out that digitization and new transmission technologies are greatly impacting the intellectual property management of major sporting events, especially in image rights, in the use and protection of trademarks, and in product licensing. Both were speakers at the webinar “Intellectual property management at sporting events”, within IP Meetings, a series of webinars promoted by ABPI and WIPO – World Intellectual Property Organization. The virtual table of the event was composed by the president of ABPI, Luiz Edgard Montaury Pimenta, who also acted as mediator, and the regional director of WIPO in Brazil, José Graça Aranha.

Castro highlighted the new trends that emerged following digital platforms in the field of broadcasting, protection of trademarks, and domain names on the internet. He noted that in events’ transmissions the impact of the entry of new players in the system, such as Facebook and Amazon, which provide several services and added contents, is great. “Traditional, one-sided transmission, in which there was no audience response, gave way to platforms with a multitude of channels and frequencies available and, even better, without content limitations”, he stated.

According to him, in trademark protection, the changes are also significant. “Protection is no longer limited to the event itself, but a whole class of complementary services, which involve merchandising and product licensing, among others”, he explained.

In his presentation, Rosenfeld highlighted the importance of intellectual property with the digitization of events. He cited the controversy involving the negotiation of image rights of players in video games, as is the case of clubs competing in the CONMEBOL Libertadores and CONMEBOL Copa Sudamericana competitions. “This is a hot topic in Brazil and has generated hundreds of lawsuits”, he said.

To watch the full Webinar, access: