Finally, someone may be standing up to the NFL and their absurd legal claims.
The National Football League has often taken its proprietary rights to absurd levels when it comes to marketing the Super Bowl. From suing churches that televised games to measuring the size of tv monitors at Las Vegas casinos holding Super Bowl parties, the NFL has taken some pretty insane copyright positions over the years.
This week, the NFL started serving cease and desist orders against local merchants in New Orleans implying it held the rights to the popular New Orleans phrase “Who Dat?”
The league even announced it was planning a crackdown on New Orleans shops and vendors who were selling “Who Dat?” t-shirts. This was moderately outrageous since SOMEBODY ELSE had copyrighted the “Who Dat” phrase which started in the 1890’s with a jazz song and minstrel shows.
This is literally the THIRD century that the phrase “Who Dat?” has been used in New Orleans popular culture in association with everything from local bus stops:
to other local attractions:
When the New Orleans media, including WWL TV, pushed back, Louisiana Republican Governor Bobby Jindall got involved. Jindall has ordered the Louisiana attorney general to look into the possibility of suing the NFL to get them to back off local merchants.
* Update: The NFL actually issued an apology for its overly agressive cease and desist order.