Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) is the world governing body of association football and the organizer of all world championship football tournaments, including its famous tournament, the FIFA World Cup.
The FIFA World Cup is an event staged on a scale of mammoth proportions. As one of the most-watched sporting events on Earth it enjoys phenomenal interest from sports fans and the business world alike.
The global interest in the FIFA World Cup means that FIFA is able to operate a highly successful commercial program which it uses to finance not only the FIFA World Cup tournament but also its other world championship football tournaments, its football development projects and its own organisational structure. The existence of FIFA’s tournaments and development activities is dependent on the commercial success of its FIFA World Cup tournament.
The keystone of FIFA’s commercial program for the FIFA World Cup tournament is its ability to attract global sponsors with exclusive rights to use its FIFA World Cup trademarks and to associate with the tournament.
In order to protect its commercial program FIFA has registered many trademarks covering a wide range of product and services categories. FIFA has built up significant goodwill in its marks over the large number of years of commercial exploitation and this is a valuable and important commercial asset.
In addition to Event Emblems, Mascots and Designations, FIFA also protects the trophies that correspond to its tournaments. For example, the FIFA World Cup Trophy - recognised by almost 90% of the world's population - has over 700 mark protection entries in 134 countries.
The unauthorised use of an emblem, word, slogan, trophy or an event title or other reference to FIFA or a FIFA Event on a merchandising item creates an infringement of FIFA’s rights. If FIFA becomes aware of the offering for sale of such infringing items on eBay, it will not hesitate to report the listing through the VeRo Program and request the removal of the corresponding listing.
Q: Why was my listing removed?
A: Your listing was removed from eBay most likely because it offered for sale products featuring unauthorized reproductions of FIFA’s intellectual property such as copyright and trademarks. FIFA regularly monitors the Internet, including auction sites, in order to protect its intellectual property rights. As part of these efforts, FIFA will notify eBay of auction listings offering for sale products that bear unauthorized reproductions our copyrights and/or trademarks, and as such, eBay will take the necessary action to comply with its user policies, which include removing the auction listing from the website.
Q: Why was my auction listing removed when there are other infringing auctions of similar FIFA related merchandise on eBay?
A: FIFA is working diligently to ensure that all unauthorized uses of its intellectual property are removed from eBay and other auction websites. While we endeavour to remove all infringing and unauthorized products from eBay, listings are added at a rate and volume which is difficult to monitor. We do, however, take necessary actions as soon as we become aware of infringements.
Q: I think that the item I offered is genuine. How can I tell if it is real?
A: Unauthorized items do not originate from any of FIFA’s official licensees. Usually, you will be able to determine whether the source of products is official by assessing the overall product quality. Another way of recognizing unauthorized products is that often they do not bear the correct authentication features that official products do (such as hang tags, official sew-in labels, correct use of trademarks, legal notice, etc.). As an eBay user, it is your responsibility to ensure that the item you are considering to buy or sell is legitimate and authorized.
Q: Can I list an item if I expressly say that it is NOT GENUINE or UNOFFICIAL?
A: No. Any kind of disclaimer regarding the authenticity of goods does not satisfy the various intellectual property laws surrounding the sale of infringing and counterfeit merchandise.
Q: You took down my item. Can I re-list the item under a different username?
A: No. The original problem with your item is that it is an unauthorised product featuring FIFA’sintellectual property rights. The auction cannot be re-listed under any title if the item in question is the problem.
Q: Why didn't FIFA contact me directly before reporting my auction to eBay?
A: Given the number of FIFA items posted on eBay, it would take a very large commitment of time for FIFA to contact each seller individually. Unfortunately, it is not possible for us to do so.
Q: What if I bought the item from a distributor or via a website?
A: It does not matter where you got the unauthorized product or whether you paid for it. If it is unauthorized, it is illegal to sell it. To protect future customers and resellers on eBay, we ask that you please forward the names and contact information of the sources of the unauthorized products to firstname.lastname@example.org .
For specific guidelines and polices that are not answered above, or if you suspect an item which is unauthorized, go to www.fifa.com/brandprotection or contact us at email@example.com .