Hosting a Church Super Bowl Party

February 1, 2022

Many churches are planning viewing parties with the teams officially set for Super Bowl LVI on February 13. Super Bowl Sunday is one of the biggest Sundays of the year, regardless of whether you are a pro football fan or not. No matter who you cheer for, hosting a get-together to watch the big game provides an opportunity to reach out to your congregation and the local community. But what copyright issues do churches need to consider? 

The good news is churches can host Super Bowl parties without fear of penalties and interference from the NFL for copyright infringement. There are few important rules, however, to sidestep possible copyright infringement. 

  1. Location matters. You must show the game on the equipment your church regularly uses; in a space the church owns. Renting space to watch the game is not allowed, even if your church rents space for regular worship services. 
  2. Don’t charge admission. The NFL has stated, however, that churches may take up a donation to defray the cost of the event or use it to collect goods for local charities. 
  3. Show the game live. Recordings of the game are not permitted. The only exception is a temporary copy if the game interferes with Sunday evening services. 
  4. Don’t use logos. You can refer to the party as a Super Bowl party, and you can refer to the two teams participating, but you can’t use the NFL Shield, Super Bowl, or Club logos. 

Churches also often play or perform music at their facility during a viewing party. The NFL doesn’t cover the music performance rights for playing or performing music in a facility. But with CCS’s PERFORMmusic Facilities License, your church has comprehensive coverage for millions of religious and secular songs to use at your event.  

If you have any questions about what types of licensing your church may need, simply e-mail us or call 855-576-5837.  

There are several elements of intellectual property rights involved in the Super Bowl, which fall under both Copyright and Trademark protection. The National Football League (NFL) has all ownership of the rights to the text, images, photographs, video, audio, graphics, user interface, and other content provided on their services, and the selection, coordination, and arrangement of such content. They have the rights to the product names, company names, trade names, logos, product packaging, and designs. Any non-official of the NFL who is advertising or transmitting any of this content is viable to infringement. 

About Christian Copyright Solutions: CCS’s quest is to help churches and Christian ministries “do music right.” CCS is an expert on church music copyrights. Our primary focus is providing licensing and clear educational resources to churches. Follow us on FacebookInstagram, and Youtube. The information contained herein is for informational purposes only and is not legal advice or a substitute for legal counsel.  

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