FIFA Threatens To Sue Brewery, Because Dutch World Cup Fans Wore Orange

from the you-can't-do-that dept

FIFA, the organization that runs the World Cup, is notoriously aggressive in defending not just its own intellectual property, but those of any sponsors, while going to extreme lengths to crack down on any non-sponsor getting any kind of publicity whatsoever without paying. It's not unlike the Olympics in that manner. Of course, that leads to some absolutely ridiculous situations, like the one many of you are sending in about FIFA ejecting 36 Dutch World Cup team supporters for the massive sin of all wearing the same orange dresses. Why? Because the women all bought the dresses from a Dutch brewery, named Bavaria, so FIFA claims it was a viral marketing stunt by the brewery to capitalize on its IP without paying. In fact, FIFA is now threatening to sue. I'd love to see that lawsuit, because it's difficult to think of any sane reason why this should break any law. As someone from the brewery noted:
"Fifa does not have the monopoly on orange and people have the freedom to wear what they want."
What if a bunch of fans all just decided to wear the same things to show support for their team?

Of course, the really amusing part of all of this is that, without ejecting those women, I would bet most people would have had no idea at all that the orange dresses represented this brewery. Now, however, it's all over the press. Nice work FIFA. You just helped promote the brewery.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    icon
    WDS (profile), Jun 15th, 2010 @ 1:17pm

    Dutch wear Orange a lot

    Orange is associated with The Netherlands. The Offical uniform of the Dutch Speedskaters in the olympics is Orange. Their fans wear orange at the olympics. Would FIFA have been okay had they gotten the dreasses somewhere other than the brewery?

     

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  2.  
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    Eric, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 1:21pm

    36? in a sea of thousands?

    I have a 61" TV. I watch the world cup. I barely EVER see the fans and if they do a cut to the fans it's for like 5 seconds. How are 36 people in a sea of thousands of fans ALSO wearing orange going to stand out? Are the dresses MORE orange? As the commenter above mentioned.. Orange is the Dutch color.

     

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  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 1:21pm

    Orange is such an innovative color, without IP who would spend the money necessary to invent orange?

     

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  4.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Jun 15th, 2010 @ 1:29pm

    Re:

    Orange you glad they didn't invent the color Bananna?

     

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  5.  
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    Mr. Orangey Orange, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 1:39pm

    I invented orange... It's mine... all mine!

     

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  6.  
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    Jimmy Rushmore, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 1:51pm

    Not just that they are threatening to sue, they had them arrested and the SA police threatened them with six months imprisonment, what jokers

     

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  7.  
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    Joseph Durnal, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 1:55pm

    There is a little more to the story

    Not that it makes it any less ridiculous, but it seems that the orange girls gained entry with tickets that they wren't supposed to have.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment_and_arts/10322048.stm

     

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  8.  
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    The Devil's Coachman (profile), Jun 15th, 2010 @ 1:56pm

    WTF? Soccer? Who gives a rat's patootie about "futbol"?

    Why is this even a subject for discussion here, never mind publication? Soccer is possibly the most boring thing on earth to watch short of golf! Booooooorinnnnggg! Like totally! Soccer fellates orangutans.

     

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  9.  
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    WDS (profile), Jun 15th, 2010 @ 1:58pm

    Re: Arrested??

    The linked article specifically says they were not arrested, but were detained in the FIFA office and questioned by police. Where did you get the arrested and threatened with 6 months in jail??

     

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  10.  
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    interval (profile), Jun 15th, 2010 @ 1:59pm

    Re: 36? in a sea of thousands?

    Orange is an interesting colour in and around the confines of Old Belfast as well...

     

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  11.  
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    interval (profile), Jun 15th, 2010 @ 2:00pm

    Re: WTF? Soccer? Who gives a rat's patootie about "futbol"?

    Speak for yourself.

     

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  12.  
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    davebarnes (profile), Jun 15th, 2010 @ 2:01pm

    just so you don't miss it

    http://www.bavaria.co.za/index1.html is the SA website

    http://www.bavaria.nl/ is the NL (Warnings: screen takeover and Flash and music)

     

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  13.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 2:16pm

    Brilliant

    Gorilla marketing for the brewery, get FIFA to advertize them worldwide. I’m going to the summer Olympics to get my company’s worldwide advertisement. (I just have to get them to threaten me).

     

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  14.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 2:18pm

    Re: Dutch wear Orange a lot

    I didn't even realize their color was orange until now... Thanks FIFA, now not only do I know what to buy when I visit there, but I know where to get it!!!

     

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  15.  
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    Daylyn (profile), Jun 15th, 2010 @ 2:30pm

    FIFA did this in the 2006 world cup to a lot of Dutch fans who wore orange clothes with a brewers name on it. Except in 2006 the fans where allowed to enter the game sans the orange clothes

     

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  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 2:31pm

    Bavaria is more associated with the blue 'spot' than the color orange. so they were only partly correct because it was most certainly "bush advertising".

    However, if someone from Bavaria Beer tipped the authorities off that this was a marketing scheme, in hopes to get TV time and press, as a group of pleasant looking females are escorted from the stadium. While the individuals involved bore no markings or colors associated with the company.....genius.

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 2:44pm

    Re: Re:

    Pretty soon all colors will be infringing and everyone would have to be naked. Then that will be infringing and simply existing will be infringing. After all, who would invent existence if it weren't for intellectual property?

     

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  18.  
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    DeeJay, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 2:56pm

    Ah, good old Streisand Effect. Where would we be without you?

     

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  19.  
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    Sean T Henry (profile), Jun 15th, 2010 @ 2:57pm

    Re: Brilliant

    Create a crappy shoe brand and advertise it by giving away some of the shoes with shirts that read "Faster than a speeding Olympian" then on the back you have a rear-view mirror that has a runner in it and the Olympic rings in reverse order.

     

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  20.  
    identicon
    ChrisB, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 3:00pm

    Re: Re:

    We need a [Funny] button, too.

     

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  21.  
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    The Devil's Coachman (profile), Jun 15th, 2010 @ 3:22pm

    Re: Re: WTF? Soccer? Who gives a rat's patootie about "futbol"?

    I did. You must have missed that.

     

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  22.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 4:14pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Yeah, but such a button would probably infringe on someone's patent.

     

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  23.  
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    bob, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 4:20pm

    Intended

    I bet the brewery was hoping that this would happen.

     

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  24.  
    identicon
    PRMan, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 4:24pm

    Re: WTF? Soccer? Who gives a rat's patootie about "futbol"?

    C'mon. There's an average of 1.5 goals (both teams) per 90 minute game so far! That's like a goal every hour at least!

    What's not to like?

     

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  25.  
    identicon
    Jimmy Rushmore, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 4:30pm

    Re: Re: Arrested??

    They were "held" for three hours and questioned, and threatened with jail, they might not need to officially arrest you or caution you to hold you and interview you in SA.

    'The police came and kept on asking us the same questions over and over, asking if we worked for Bavaria.

    'They said we were ambush-marketing and it was against the law in South Africa.

    'They said we would be arrested and would stay in jail for six months. Girls
    were crying. It was bad.'

    "http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1286788/World-Cup-2010-ITV-axes-pundit-Robbie-Earl e-handing-tickets-models-promoting-Dutch-beer.htmld""

     

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  26.  
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    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), Jun 15th, 2010 @ 4:37pm

    Re: Dutch wear Orange a lot

    It's amazing that they let the Ivory Coast take the field.

     

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  27.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 4:59pm

    Blatter et al are just another set of idiots. If the World Cup comes to the US, we can take that AH down with so many lawsuits, he will never be able to come into the US again.

     

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  28.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 5:13pm

    Re: Re: WTF? Soccer? Who gives a rat's patootie about "futbol"?

    GOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!

     

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  29.  
    identicon
    rec9140, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 5:36pm

    Who? What???

    Just more proof that the world cup and the olympics and the organizations that run them are irreleveant and becoming more so with every event they run.

    Theres a reason why 99.9% of the US could care less about a boring sport.

    The olympics have been off my even care list for years now. With the crap pulled in Vancouver I will never care about them one bit again.

    Both events don't even need to bother thinking about holding their event in the US. For one of them nobody in the US would go.

     

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  30.  
    identicon
    NAMELESS ONE, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 6:44pm

    SPEED SOCCOR up with ice and a frozen piece a ribber and a piece a wood

    oh wait thats hockey

     

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  31.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 10:58pm

    Re: Who? What???

    Me thinks thou dost protest too much. It is all these people complaining that they hate soccer at the top of their lungs. If you don't like soccer ignore it. If you feel like yelling about it take a boot to the head.

     

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  32.  
    identicon
    tony, Jun 15th, 2010 @ 11:06pm

    what

    Did anyone see the Dutch game. 90% of the crown wore orange! Try throwing them all out!

     

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  33.  
    identicon
    mooooo, Jun 16th, 2010 @ 1:13am

    The thing is that the SA girls were hired by bavaria, which makes the entire "we just gave them the skirts" defence a bit weird. That said, expect the FIFA to impose more strict rules the next time a WC will be held and in the end the only people who can enter the stadium are the players.

    oh and PLEASE stop complaining about soccer being boring, it has nothing to do with the issue at hand.

    and if you think that the NFL and other american orgs. are better than the FIFA/IOC... well i've got a bridge to sell.

     

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  34.  
    identicon
    Badari, Jun 16th, 2010 @ 3:51am

    I Agree with you 200%

     

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  35.  
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    Marcel de Jong (profile), Jun 16th, 2010 @ 4:10am

    It's actually more insidious than this

    One of FIFAs sponsors is Heineken. And Bavaria and Heineken are competitors.

    But it's incredibly petty of FIFA to deny people access to the stadium based on the logo on their clothing.
    Most t-shirts I see have logos on them.
    What if I wear an ADIDAS shirt to one of a NIKE sponsored game? Or any other brand t-shirt? Would I be denied access, even though I paid for a ticket?

     

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  36.  
    identicon
    brian Benko, Jun 16th, 2010 @ 4:26am

    FIFA Should be sued for being petty

    FIFA executives deserve to lose their jobs. Social Media will fix the Olympics and FIFA

    People should organize for the next game and teach FIFA a lesson.

     

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  37.  
    identicon
    Moo^2, Jun 16th, 2010 @ 4:45am

    Re: It's actually more insidious than this

    Actually Budweiser is the main sponsor, Heineken sponsored some of the Dutch friendlies where we heard about the whole issue for the first time.

    Either way, the whole thing reeks like a open sewer. the FIFA seriously needs to reconsider this whole exclusive sponsorship-deal if they do not wish to alienate a lot of fans. 90% of the dutch fans wear commericial gimmicks these days, and you sound/look like a giant dick if you try to enforce dresscodes like this.

    like someone mentioned: what if the team switches shirt sponsors? am I allowed to turn up in my old shirt from a different shirt sponsor or do I have to buy a new one before I am allowed in the stadium?

    the FIFA needs to remember who are watching the game, the players on the field would be nothing without the fans.

     

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  38.  
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    Niall (profile), Jun 16th, 2010 @ 5:17am

    Re: FIFA Should be sued for being petty

    The trouble is, other countries (New Zealand, UK) are trying to increase these laws to 'protect' their sporting events (like the 2012 Olympics). So no doubt there will be a collision between fans, other companies and the official bodies.

    And like with removal of cigarette brand labelling, all that people will do next will be to use styles or colours associated with a product. Easy enough to run an unconnected-looking ad campaign in parallel...

     

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  39.  
    identicon
    Sean Graham, Jun 16th, 2010 @ 6:25am

    Stupid

    They in an ITV presenters seats and he got sacked because of it!!!

     

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  40.  
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    Lisae Boucher (profile), Jun 16th, 2010 @ 7:25am

    Two women have been arrested!

    Actually, for this WK tournament, South Africa created a special WK-court to deal with hooligans and other misbehaving visitors. This court is created to uphold the rules as set by the FIFA and the FIFA doesn't allow any commercial outings from non-sponsoring companies.
    These women were hired by Bavaria, btw. They didn't do this on their own but they got paid to stand there to dance in those orange dresses.
    In the mean time, the Dutch government has asked the SA ambassador about this whole case and is definitely outraged about these arrests. Unfortunately, the whole case cannot be downplayed anymore simply because of the Streisand effect. Everyone in the whole World now know about those orange dresses and how they're related to Bavaria. (But not many will realise that Orange is the official color for the Netherlands, since "Oranje" (orange in Dutch) happens to be part of the family name of the Dutch queen. Officially, her name is Queen Beatrix Wilhelmina Armgard of the Netherlands, of Orange-Nassau and of Lippe-Biesterfeld.
    The SA government and FIFA are trying to make it sound okay what they're doing, not realising they're making things just worse. Even if these arrests were justified, this whole case is getting over the top and the whole World just starts feeling sorry for Bavaria, while a growing dislike of FIFA is rising.

    Am glad TechDirt wrote an article about this. It's the Streisand effect in action so it's a perfect case here. Will FIFA learn from this? Nope, since FIFA just wants money from their sponsors and is attempting to appear tough against these violators. They know that soccer-fans won't really care about this, except for that little monarchy in Europe. Well, let's ban FIFA!

     

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  41.  
    identicon
    Daniel, Jun 16th, 2010 @ 8:21am

    That's really no sense... Sometimes people should really think twice before acting...Manchester 2010

     

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  42.  
    identicon
    Brad, Jun 16th, 2010 @ 8:48am

    Misleading article

    How could you miss the fact that these were south african models hired by the brewery? And they were in the stadium useing non transfereable free tickets that did not belong to them.

    Please do a little reseach before posting articles like this.

     

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  43.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 16th, 2010 @ 8:48am

    Re: It's actually more insidious than this

    The dresses didn't have logos on them.

     

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  44.  
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    Almost Anonymous (profile), Jun 16th, 2010 @ 10:38am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Perhaps, but not for THAT particular pun :(

     

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  45.  
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    Almost Anonymous (profile), Jun 16th, 2010 @ 10:45am

    Re: Misleading article

    """How could you miss the fact that these were south african models hired by the brewery?"""

    And your point is? Is it illegal for South African models to attend a sporting event?

    """And they were in the stadium useing non transfereable free tickets that did not belong to them."""

    Then the stadium would be justified in kicking them out, not having them detained by police and threatened with jail time. It would be a civil contract dispute, not a criminal case.

    Now a counter-question for you: How could you miss the fact that the stadium/FIFA/cops overreacted in every way?

     

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  46.  
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    Marcel de Jong (profile), Jun 16th, 2010 @ 12:11pm

    Re: Re: It's actually more insidious than this

    On the back they did... had the logo embroidered in white, if I'm not mistaken.
    Sure no blue mark on the front, though it did have a small blue label.
    But you're right, on the front it was completely logo free. FIFA doesn't have ANY leg to stand on.

     

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  47.  
    identicon
    Brad, Jun 16th, 2010 @ 12:29pm

    Journalism/Bloggism in the year 2010:
    1. Ignore the known facts that don't support your side of the argument.
    2. Make some stuff up. Just Lie. (Call the girls supporters, say they bought the dresses)
    3. Ask ridiculous over dramatic questions: "How could you miss the fact that the stadium/FIFA/cops overreacted in every way?" Oh the humanity!

    This was unquestionably a marketing stunt. To think otherwise is just ridiculous. To propose they should have been kicked out but not questioned or detained is dumb. The Police should not take the time to ask questions? figure out what is going on?

    This is standard hippster "I don't like authority but and too lazy to do anything but blog about it." BS

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  48.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2010 @ 12:07am

    Orange

    The point of the dresses was not the colour. Bavaria had a marketing campaign in the netherlands shortly before the world cup where they had someone famous model that exact dress and associated it with Bavaria, so dutch people watching the world cup would recognise that dress and connect it with the company.

     

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  49.  
    identicon
    Hiwelt, Jun 18th, 2010 @ 11:37am

    A good example for: how to spell Common Sense

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  50.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 31st, 2012 @ 2:59am

    I guess fifa would get really bent out of shape if it went to Syracuse NY.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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