Insights & Media


FIFA warns of its exclusivity on Intellectual Property rights


With the football world cup approaching in Qatar, FIFA issued a notification in mid-June warning of the exclusivity of its sponsors' use of intellectual property rights. Along with it, was also published a manual guide that clearly explains what can and cannot be done during the event with regard to the media, corporate advertising, the gaming and betting industry, ticket sales, general trade activity, public games display among other relevant occasions where its intellectual property may be misused.

The purpose of these publications is to educate all participants in the celebration of the event, but mainly to protect those who are their financiers and sponsors.

Although it is not the first time that FIFA issues this type of alert and guidance, the truth is that, given the popularity of the event, this is still often an opportunity for certain companies to make easy gains through prohibited marketing activities, such as 'ambush marketing', seeking a commercial association to the event without having authorization from the organizer nor the required intelectual property rights,  not foreseeing the legal consequences, sometimes quite severe, associated with this type of action.

FIFA has the right to legally protect its trademarks as well as to take necessary and reasonable action against offenders to safeguard their commercial program. It is in this context that it calls on all the ones who wish to make use of their image and rights to do so in a legitimate way and defending the interest of all participants.



> What intellectual property is protected by FIFA for this event?

  • The Official Emblems;
  • Trophies; 
  • The Official Mascot; 
  • Logos; 
  • Words of direct association to the event (FIFA, FIFA World Cup, FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, World Cup, QATAR 2022, …)
  • The “motto” of the event.

> How can I associate myself with the event without misusing FIFA's Intellectual Property? 

  • Through the provision of services for the Tournament (infrastructure, food, private security, events and activities at the event venue);
  • Looking for opportunities for promotion partnerships alongside FIFA rights holders;

Supporting local football in the country by looking for more information alongside their national football associations.

> I am not an Official Sponsor: What should I not do? 

  • You must not use any official Qatar 2022 or national team logos, protected slogans or terms, designs or images of the event in your advertising;
  • You must avoid using or associating with partnerships using 'parasite' or ambush marketing techniques;
  • You must avoid using the image of players or teams participating in the tournament without their prior permission.

> I am a Sponsor: What should I pay special attention to

  • Check the extent of the rights and make sure you are operating within them;
  • Make sure that you have gone through the appropriate approval process, and with the holder of the relevant rights, i.e. FIFA or your country's national team;
  • If you're using the image of players or other celebrities, make sure you have their permission;
  • Make sure that you read all the guidance material provided by FIFA and/or the national team and contact your local legal advisor in case of doubt.