FanDuel - WFBC

February 02, 2007

NFL Won't Let Church Show Game: - The NFL has nixed a church's plans to use a wall projector to show the Colts-Bears Super Bowl game, saying it would violate copyright laws.

posted by ursus_comiter to football at 10:54 AM - 89 comments

More details from James Robertson's blog.

posted by rcade at 10:57 AM on February 02

That's just ridiculous.

posted by BornIcon at 11:38 AM on February 02

This sounds like some B.S. to me. Its a church for Christ's sake!

posted by Warrior50 at 11:43 AM on February 02

"It just frustrates me that most of the places where crowds are going to gather to watch this game are going to be places that are filled with alcohol and other things that are inappropriate for children," So what were they planning on doing about the beer commercials, scantily clad cheerleaders, and wardrobe malfunctions?

posted by MrFrisby at 11:49 AM on February 02

Wow, my 61" TV is illegal to watch the Super Bowl on? How idiotic.

posted by mr_crash_davis at 12:10 PM on February 02

Wow, my 61" TV is illegal to watch the Super Bowl on? How idiotic. Assuming that it's in your home, which is a private residence, then no. It's not.

posted by blarp at 12:23 PM on February 02

What blarp said- more detail in rcade's links' comments.

posted by tieguy at 12:41 PM on February 02

So, let's see ... the church originally planned to charge an admission fee, so they were going to profit from it. They used a copyrighted name to help them make money. And now they're crying poor because they were caught doing it. Gee, sounds like they were in the right to me! Oh, and this line from the pastor: It just frustrates me that most of the places where crowds are going to gather to watch this game are going to be places that are filled with alcohol and other things that are inappropriate for children... I think it's inappropriate for parents to take their kids to church and force-feed them religion before they can make a decision for themselves.

posted by wfrazerjr at 12:50 PM on February 02

Hrm, my comment doesn't appear to be going up there. What I wrote: If you look at the law, you'll see that 5(B) specifies that it regulates "communication by an establishment...if--" and then goes on to discuss specific characteristics of the establishment. Typically, drafters of laws choose words like 'establishment' fairly carefully; and judges tend to understand that- you'd likely have to get a judge who was pretty far off the reservation to interpret establishment as a private home, particularly since the intent here is clearly to regulate rebroadcast in a commercial context. The congressional history of the law makes this fairly explicit- the purpose of clause (5) is "to exempt from copyright liability anyone who merely turns on, in a public place, an ordinary radio or television receiving apparatus of a kind commonly sold to members of the public for private use." Note focus on *public place*. The 55" inch requirement was added (again according to the congressional history) in order to draw a line around what the owner of a small establishment can claim is 'just something I brought from home.' Judicially, the most specific explanation of the section actually comes from the Supreme Court- which describes that section of the act as "exempt[ing] small businesses, restaurants, and like entities from having to pay performance royalties on music played from licensed radio, television, and similar facilities." So, yeah, this isn't about homes/private parties. False alarm, everyone go home and crack open a beer. (The church does appear to be on the hook, legally speaking, though of course I agree that this is stupid.) (IANAL yet, take with big grain of salt, consult with your own lawyer before throwing a super bowl party, yadda, yadda.)

posted by tieguy at 12:54 PM on February 02

I understand what the NFL's restrictions are, but I will always feel they're ridiculous. You broadcast something over the airwaves, receive money from the networks that broadcast the games, and, at least in the case of the Super Bowl, ask astronomical prices for a game ticket, and yet have the audacity to come down on a church, in this instance, who want to hold a get-together to view the game? It's a typical case of a sports league that can't do anything about the really big, serious issues facing the game, but still find it easy to come down on the average public (who they depend on for their very survival). If places are charging money just to view a game on a large screen, then I can see outlawing it. This just gives the league one more swift kick in the ass.

posted by dyams at 12:57 PM on February 02

Also, with regards to any money charged, most of the time the money is exchanged in order to bring in food and refreshments that are served during the game, not in order to just view the game. And remember, much of it has to do with Neilson ratings anyhow, and I could give a rat's ass about those.

posted by dyams at 01:00 PM on February 02

Its a church for Christ's sake! Indeed. I love a good... what is this, double entendre? Funny, that's what I call it. If this story was about the back room of a liquor store instead of a church, I doubt anybody would care at all. Regardless of whether this was a nitpicky act by the league, churches are not above the law. Getting caught breaking a law and then whining about it afterwards doesn't seem to be a such a great example for these "children, who, by the way, we were going to let in at half price."

posted by The Crafty Sousepaw at 01:12 PM on February 02

Much of what has to do with Neilsen ratings? Charging money to bring in food and refreshments?

posted by lil_brown_bat at 01:15 PM on February 02

Much of what has to do with Neilsen ratings? The reason the league doesn't allow viewings such as this church planned: NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said the league's long-standing policy is to ban "mass out-of-home viewing" of the Super Bowl. An exception is made for sports bars and other businesses that show televised sports as a part of their everyday operations. "We have contracts with our (TV) networks to provide free over-the-air television for people at home," Aiello said. "The network economics are based on television ratings and at-home viewing. Out-of-home viewing is not measured by Nielsen." I've gone to watch the Super Bowl several times at places that charge roughly $3 or $4 to pay for food people provide during the game. The food comment didn't have anything to do with the Neilson comment. What I mean by all of it is the NFL should stop worrying about this stuff. Once they've made the decision to allow a network to broadcast a game, how it's viewed should be a person's individual right. Scalping of tickets and illegal gambling should be more of a concern.

posted by dyams at 01:42 PM on February 02

Much of what has to do with Neilsen ratings? Charging money to bring in food and refreshments? My guess is he's saying that "what" = the NFL's concern over copyright infringement. Meaning that if everyone in America watched the game at the same place, the game's Nielsen's rating would look poor, thus potentially impacting advertising demand. IF the church was charging a fee with the intent of making a profit, then maybe my big toe (but still not the rest of my humanity) could side with the NFL. But, as it stands, church or not, what is this otherwise hurting? So, a group of townfolk get together at the church and watch the game. How does that harm the NFL - you're talking about people that would either not watch the game or watch it at home by themselves. So, instead of allowing your brand and product to be exposed to people who might not otherwise experience it, you are taking a hard line and alienating a wider group of people? If someone could demonstrate to me that the NFL is harmed by this - ratings, income, et al - then maybe I'd reconsider. But, this just wreaks of "pick your battles", and this ain't the right battle. on preview - what dyams said

posted by littleLebowski at 01:57 PM on February 02

I think it's inappropriate for parents to take their kids to church and force-feed them religion before they can make a decision for themselves. Relevance?

posted by brainofdtrain at 02:44 PM on February 02

Meh - can't charge people to watch the Super Bowl, be you church, bar, laundromat or my place (but you have to chip in for the pizza, beer and, uh, other kinds of intoxicants). While it is unlikely to cause 'harm', it is also frankly illegal and churches probably shouldn't do illegal things. Now where'd that alter boy take off to?

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 03:20 PM on February 02

But, this just wreaks of "pick your battles", and this ain't the right battle. That's what it comes down to for me. It's heavily watched, all over the world, and I doubt a few groups getting together (relatively speaking) to watch it on a 60 inch picture make too much of a difference.

posted by dyams at 04:03 PM on February 02

Is an alter boy anything like an altar boy, Weedy? You sound a little altered yourself.

posted by ridadie2005 at 04:04 PM on February 02

If Jim Jones was showing the game would you go? Don't drink the cool-aid.

posted by GoBirds at 04:20 PM on February 02

On the one hand this could be like trademark, in that you have to enforce control to maintain the legal right, so for the NFL legal minds there's no room for shades of gray. On the other hand, damn, NFL legal brainiacs, it's church, in a country where close to 90% of the population self-identify as believing in Jesus as the Son of God--don't you ever talk to the PR staff before pulling crap like this? On the gripping hand, what wfrazerjr said.

posted by billsaysthis at 04:21 PM on February 02

If it is illegal for an establishment to show the game on a screen larger than 55" then how do sports bars gain exemption from the law? And, why can't a church do the same? And, how is that the NFL legal office is the authority granting the exemption? If I've read the stories right, the NFL is granting exception to Sports Bars but not churches (wierd, I think). Copywrite laws are often a matter of interpretation and not settled until there is some sort of prescendent established. That's not an excuse for a church to break the law--or anyone else for that matter--but I think the jury is still out on whether or not this really is law. Keep in mind lawyers are adversaries not judges. Adversaries defend the interests of their clients whereas judges interpret the law (and are presumably unbiased). That said a church can still show the game as long as they do so on a screen smaller than 55". For a small gathering that's not too bad--just sit close. By the way, the Fall Creek Church was not charging admission to visitors only members. And that admission cost was to cover the expense of food. Criticisms on this thread suggesting the church was making a profit are baseless (and presumptious). I also don't believe church's have been breaking the law or "trying to get away with it" as earlier posts have suggested. This law comes as a surprise to me. It is more akin to going 55 mph in an unposted 40 mph zone. Who'd a thought there's be a law against a church showing a show from free broadcast television? Not me.

posted by ChiefsSuperFan at 04:39 PM on February 02

I much appreciate the legal opinion expressed by tieguy when he wrote: "typically, drafters of laws choose words like 'establishment' fairly carefully; and judges tend to understand that- you'd likely have to get a judge who was pretty far off the reservation to interpret establishment as a private home, particularly since the intent here is clearly to regulate rebroadcast in a commercial context." Could tieguy or other explain how a church (a private place of worship???) is in anyway a commercial establishment? TIA Piscator

posted by Fly_Piscator at 04:44 PM on February 02

The constitution clearly delineates the seperation between church and football.

posted by irunfromclones at 05:02 PM on February 02

The thing that seems to escape almost everyone that has commented is - what is a church doing showing a football game? I always thought that church was a place to go to worship God. If people want to watch football they can do that for free in the comfort of their own home. Having a dispute over something as absolutely stupid as this is a large part of what is wrong with society today. It seems that the people that should know better than to offend God by worshipping false idols in His house, don't. Meanwhile, everyone else is virtually oblivious to the premise that there is anything wrong with idol worshipping in a sacred place.

posted by nyrangersfan43 at 05:13 PM on February 02

I think it's inappropriate for parents to take their kids to church and force-feed them religion before they can make a decision for themselves. Relevance? Relevance = this guy's worried about all the apparent horrible things people might be exposed to in bars, etc ... when I think he should be just as concerned about cramming religion down the throats of kids too young to make an informed decision as to whether or not the agenda being forced on them is a hot load of horseshit. He sees dangers in one place, I see them in his own house of God. Piscator, I think it becomes a "commerical" place when they start charging a fee to get in. I also highly doubt the church was running things so tight fiscally as to be able to prove they weren't going to make any money through the sale of tickets. It probably could have been avoided by simply telling people to show up, bring a friend and a casserole, but strangely enough, the church chose to charge an admission fee. I don't think this would be any different than your local theater charging $10 to watch the big game on a big screen. They already do this with over-the0air broadcasts of some WWE events, but guess who makes that call and shares in the profits? Yup, the WWE. Just because it's happening in a church doesn't make it holy.

posted by wfrazerjr at 05:33 PM on February 02

OK--I think people are getting a little hung up on the idea of "church". Church is a word that describes more than doctrine and faith. I doubt the church in question was going to hold their Super Bowl party in the sanctuary with the big screen television up next to the altar. Most churches have social halls, which aren't considered sacred places--just large rooms for friends and neighbors to spend time together. And the last time I checked, NFL football wasn't up there with having no other gods before Him. BTW, I think it's very interesting that the church offered to make all kinds of concessions to their party plans and wound up cancelling it entirely because they didn't want to break the law. I agree they were ignorant of the law to begin with (all their own fault), but I don't think we need to cast them as evil.

posted by Sophie St. Lucie at 06:13 PM on February 02

wfrazerjr, damn, I thought I was bitter toward organized religion. You make me look like a deacon. What would you have parents of small children do on Sunday mornings when they wish to attend church. Find a babysitter early on a Sunday morning so that the kids aren't getting brainwashed? Ever think they take the kids because the church provides free daycare while they worship? Ever think that maybe when the child becomes old enough the parents will respect his/her choice about whether or not to attend church? Careful, your personal issues are showing.

posted by carolinared at 06:26 PM on February 02

Most churches have social halls, which aren't considered sacred places--just large rooms for friends and neighbors to spend time together. Yes indeed, and not a few nominally church-oriented gatherings are about sports. Why, let's not forget the (in)famous tradition of the church youth group weekend ski trip...

posted by lil_brown_bat at 08:20 PM on February 02

I see one common misconception about the "holiness" of a building that most commonly understand as the "church." The "church" is not the building itself, the "church" is that group of christians who worship together in a particular building. Just because a bunch of people get together and meet in a particular building in no way makes the building "holy," its just a physical structure made of block and mortar. About the worshipping idols, the Super Bowl, in and of itself is not an idol, the condition and motive of an individual's heart is what makes it idolatry. I met with a church up in northern ohio, and we did this very thing. We didn't collect any money, instead we all brought something to eat and drink (all intoxicants excluded). We did have a projector and screen, which was well above the 55" rule, and I had no clue about this law. BTW: about the commercials, and "scantily clad women etc., we turned the projection off during commercials and the halftime show. It can be done! I'll just remember, NO MORE LAW BREAKING FOR ME!

posted by bavarianmotorworker at 08:41 PM on February 02

I think the church crossed the lines when they decided to charge admission and use NFL trademarks for advertising their event. I have seen many churches show the superbowl in rec rooms but not charge and simply let it go out low key without using NFL trademarks or having any money exchange hands. However, I do think the NFL could have told them not to charge and to stop using trademarks instead of pushing the issue on the screen size. It's all about the money. "The love of money is the root of all evil." I remember reading that somewhere. MrFrisby, I have often had family friendly viewing of the "big game" (not using any trademarks here for fear of legal action) and will make sure someone has the remote and is in charge of making sure commercials and half time bloopers don't get shown.

posted by Familyman at 08:46 PM on February 02

Brainwashing children. NFL= Idol worshiping another God before Him. The Pastor= a hypocrite for watching a football game with a few of his members and taking up a collection to get food and or refreshments. Wow, pull it together. I watched the Superbowl the year of the Janet Jackson incident at an Elder's house. He actually changed the channel during each commercial and during the half time show. I didn't see the wardrobe malfunction live. Curse him. And how dare he rob me of the great American tradition called the TV commercial. That force feeder should have let me decide if what I was watching was evil. I'm a grown up. I think it was an attempt to brainwash me. Now every time I see the "Brilliant!!" commercial, I start repenting for setting an evil thing before mine eye. Down with the "hellevision". It's all about the money. "The love of money is the root of all evil." I remember reading that somewhere. Whoa. I doubt they were making a profit. Maybe they were putting the money towards food (as previously mentioned) or maybe they were putting some towards the electric or heat bills they would be running up. Why do some think that all Pastors pocket all the money all the time? Churches have bills people. Electric, heat, water, sewer and AC are not free to Churches. As far as force feeding children: Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. Or you could let this child whom you say cannot make informed decisions on their own continue to gorge themselves on a steady diet of MTV, video games, reality TV and life as depicted by Hollywood. Maybe you're right, unedited Eminem is working wonders for this generation.

posted by Bishop at 09:20 PM on February 02

Let's try something here: Instead of a church, what if it was an "adult theatre" or a gay bar (or some other establishment that was deemed "morally reprehensible" by some people) that was planning to use a projector to show the Super Bowl? What if they had advertisements around the town and planned to charge admission? How many people would be up in arms if the NFL sent a cease-and-desist order in that case?

posted by grum@work at 10:22 PM on February 02

You're right, grum. Nobody would care if it was a adult theatre of gay bar, etc. that had the plug pulled on their plans. The NFL may let the gay bar slide, however, if, as it states in the article, they show sports events on TV as part of their daily operations. But the league choosing to make an example out of the church, in this instance, will always look bad. It could have been overlooked. If they were charging $25 bucks a head or more, I could see it. It's like the DEA busting a guy in his home who had one, small, thinly rolled joint in his possession, and thinking they just took a big bite out of the drug trade. Deal with the bigger issues and those who, without question, are making a profit from these rights. And I agree with Sophie St.Lucie about church fellowship halls. It's not about religion just because it's in proximity to a place of worship; it's about fellowship and bringing people together.

posted by dyams at 07:19 AM on February 03

Whoa. I doubt they were making a profit. Maybe they were putting the money towards food (as previously mentioned) or maybe they were putting some towards the electric or heat bills they would be running up. You say you "doubt" they were making a profit yet you don't know for certain. Maybe they were going to do just as you thought and use some money for utilities. But then again, maybe they were going to give the proceeds to Benny Hinn (ridiculous notion). The point I am trying to make here is why should the NFL automatically assume the church isn't trying to profit from their product just because they are a church? I am using profit here in the context of taking in money they otherwise would not have received had it not been for the Super Bowl. You asked the question, "Why do some think that all Pastors pocket all the money all the time?". Do you have any proof this is not the case here? The NFL is a business. They have rules in place to protect others from profiting from their product. Whether its a church, house of ill repute or an orphanage for that matter, the NFL still has the right to protect its product. I don't know this for fact but I would probably guess had the church asked persmission from the NFL to show the game, they might have granted them permission free of charge. Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. I don't think you were thinking of this type of training but it is a reality.

posted by danjel at 07:25 AM on February 03

Danjel, I fail to see the relevance. Why would you involve the Catholic Church in this discussion? The establishment involved is a Baptist Church.

posted by tommytrump at 08:17 AM on February 03

I enjoy re-broadcasting NFL games with implied oral consent, not expressed written consent.

posted by HATER 187 at 09:01 AM on February 03

Of course my personal issues are showing. It's called an argument. They're mainly showing because people are leaping to the defense of a church and its leader simply because of religion -- or in other words, blindly assuming the church couldn't have been doing anything wrong here. The argument seems to be, "Well, it's a church, so let them do it, and shame on the NFL for calling them on it." The Pastor= a hypocrite for watching a football game with a few of his members and taking up a collection to get food and or refreshments. No, Bishop. Pastor = in the wrong for using his church to do something illegal. Where's the difficulty in understanding that? What they were doing with the money is not relevant. The fact that the church planned to illegally show the game and collect any type of fee for it is relevant. Was it a horrendous crime? No, it wasn't, but it's still wrong. The NFL isn't the guilty party here. Stop trying to make it out that way. Brainwashing children. If I told you a group of parents were forcing young children to sit in a room for an hour or two at least once a week with a bunch of adults and be lectured about Satanism (or Nazism or a nifty timeshare opportunity in Florida), what would you call it?

posted by wfrazerjr at 09:21 AM on February 03

Oh, dear. The fight is on.

posted by mr_crash_davis at 10:02 AM on February 03

Wow. Catholic bashing AND equating taking children to church with indoctrination into Nazism in the same thread. This could have been a rather interesting debate, too bad. As it is, I've got to go finish my "hot load of horseshit" lesson plans for Sunday School tomorrow.

posted by Sophie St. Lucie at 10:11 AM on February 03

Danjel, I fail to see the relevance. Why would you involve the Catholic Church in this discussion? The establishment involved is a Baptist Church. tommytrump, the intent of my example was not to single out the Catholic Church but to provide an example that a church is not exempt from sinful actions. I could make the argument based on your reply to my post that Proverbs 22:6 only applies to the Baptist Church. I doubt that was your intention.

posted by danjel at 10:32 AM on February 03

Oh, dear. The fight is on. From the article mr_crash_davis posted: The statement said the NFL "has absolutely no objection to churches and others hosting Super Bowl viewing parties as long as they do not charge admission and show the game on a television of the type commonly used at home." That does not seem unreasonable to me.

posted by danjel at 10:40 AM on February 03

Absolutely agreed, danjel. It's not the issue of showing the game in the church at all. It's charging a fee to get in that causes the problem. As for my parallels, Sophie, I threw in the timeshare option to show I knew how the other examples would be taken -- improperly. The message being delivered is, again, not relevant. The age of the children it's being forced on is. From Crash's link: "We want to save souls by any means necessary. Football, traditional service, street ministry -- it doesn't matter. All we want to do is increase fellowship with believers and demonstrate true love to people that don't know Christ." So, of course, now this makes it right. Can I get a hallelujah after the TV timeout? How about a chorus of that old-time hymn, "Breaking The law For Jesus?" Here's the link to the church's web site, which now says nothing about the event.

posted by wfrazerjr at 11:07 AM on February 03

Believe or not, wfrazerjr, I understood what you were saying. I just don't happen to agree with the way you said it. The beauty of living where we do means that you have the right to say it and I have the right to disagree. The church in question isn't breaking the law. They chose to cancel the event when they found out there would be legal problems. I'd call that doing the right thing (a little late, maybe, but it is still the right thing). I can think of a lot of other groups that would have kept going, law be damned.

posted by Sophie St. Lucie at 11:50 AM on February 03

Thou shalt not steal; not from the NFL, not for the benefit of your church, not for any reason at all. Thou shalt not steal. You can equate this with that, and compare apples and oranges all you want to, but the Big Guy was pretty concise and to the point on this one. If your church can't even follow God's law, then what kind of church are you attending? Have a nice day.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 12:25 PM on February 03

Sophie, you need to check out Crash's link. The church hasn't cancelled anything. They're going ahead as scheduled in the name of the Lord. And where are you assuming we both live?

posted by wfrazerjr at 12:28 PM on February 03

North America? Sophie, always check the profile first.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 02:55 PM on February 03

I did check the profile first. I've even been to Barrie ONT Canada and I know that Canadians enjoy a similar right to free thought and expression. But you all have a nice day. I'm off to church where my children will be forced to sit through an hour's worth of brain-washing (not that it will work because they will probably choose not to listen, happy?)

posted by Sophie St. Lucie at 04:00 PM on February 03

They chose to cancel the event when they found out there would be legal problems. Not according to the link posted by crash. From the article: "The NFL implied that it has a problem with the venue and medium that local churches conduct ministry," the senior pastor, the Rev. David Greene, said in a press release. "We want to save souls by any means necessary. Football, traditional service, street ministry -- it doesn't matter..." Comments:

  • Rev. Greene's statement about what the NFL has "implied" is at best disingenuous; the NFL has made a direct and unambiguous statement that they don't mind the church showing the game.
  • Some people in this thread have been speculating about what the church was up to showing the Super Bowl. Rev. Greene's statement makes it clear: it's not about friends getting together, it's not a social event, it's about "sav[ing] souls by any means necessary." [emphasis mine]
  • If you accept this version of blowing off the law because it doesn't agree with your worldview and your agenda, where do you draw the line?

posted by lil_brown_bat at 04:06 PM on February 03

I did check the profile first. I've even been to Barrie ONT Canada and I know that Canadians enjoy a similar right to free thought and expression. This isn't Canada, either; it's a privately-funded website where the public enjoys such privileges (not rights) as the owners of the website choose to grant. You have no constitutional rights to assert here, no matter what country's constitution you're thinking of. But you all have a nice day. I'm off to church where my children will be forced to sit through an hour's worth of brain-washing (not that it will work because they will probably choose not to listen, happy?) Oooh, say that again. Watching Christians play the victimized martyr makes me feel all tingly.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 04:09 PM on February 03

I've even been to Barrie ONT Canada and I know that Canadians enjoy a similar right to free thought and expression. It's a nice town, isn't it, Sophie? I moved here a couple of years ago from the United States to raise my family. One of the main reasons was stuff like this, stuff Americans don't seem to have a big problem with. I'm also curious how you reconcile "free thought and expression" with having a five-year-old sit through Sunday school classes.

posted by wfrazerjr at 05:09 PM on February 03

Ummm, did I click on MetaFilter or SportsFilter? Damn this wacky mouse.

posted by forrestv at 05:15 PM on February 03

Fraze the one issue I have is what else are you going to do with your kids? If the family attends church, it is convienient to drop the kids off at Sunday School for an hour. Instead of paying for some stranger to babysit they can drop their kids off in the same building for free. Not every kid in Sunday School is undergoing a forced indoctrination.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 05:27 PM on February 03

I'm also curious how you reconcile "free thought and expression" with having a five-year-old sit through Sunday school classes Dude, seriously. Were you beaten by a Nun or something? Maybe the parents of the 5 year old want to combat what the child is picking up in public or from TV or from a few of the kids in his class. Influence upon children is coming from all directions. To think you have an issue with parents who teach their children what they believe in their hearts to be right strikes me as very odd. It goes without saying that there are some false doctrines out there that are pretty ridiculous when it comes to educating anyone (let alone children). However, there are 10 times as many true faiths and doctrines that are perfect for children. To lump all Christian doctrines together is about as ignorant as assuming all Muslim faiths teach children to blow up buildings. Other Indiana churches said they are deciding whether they should go through with their Super Bowl party plans, given the NFL's stance. Now to say the Church in question is not "about it's Father's business" brings another question to my mind. Were all the other Churches that were planning to do this evil, money hungry hypocrites as well? Or is it possible that the majority of them had the same innocent evening planned? NFL officials spotted a promotion of Fall Creek Baptist Church's "Super Bowl Bash" on the church Web site last week and overnighted a letter to the pastor demanding the party be canceled, the church said. "We have contracts with our (TV) networks to provide free over-the-air television for people at home," Aiello said. "The network economics are based on television ratings and at-home viewing. Out-of-home viewing is not measured by Nielsen." The NFL monitoring Church websites to make sure no one screws up their ratings is ridiculous. As far as it being OK for sports bars to broadcast NFL games, this is a no brain-er. Do you know how many beer companies are shelling out the 2.6 million dollar fee to show cartoon characters state how "Brilliant!!" it is to drink "_____ draft from a bottle not a glass" during the s---- b--- ? You can believe 1 thing, if the Church in question purchased a :30 second, 2.6 million dollar time slot to advertise, they would be having their s---- b--- party and charging to get in.

posted by Bishop at 08:19 PM on February 03

I'm not saying you can't do it, YYM, or that it's necessarily even wrong. Just don't act like because it's Christianity that it's any less a form of indoctrination than any other message would be, and I think it's incredibly hypocritical for those same people to be complaining about messages being foisted on their children by television (uh, maybe you should just shut the TV off or spend more time with your kids outside?). Dude, seriously. Were you beaten by a Nun or something? Maybe the parents of the 5 year old want to combat what the child is picking up in public or from TV or from a few of the kids in his class. I may have been. It would have been preferable to sitting through church and Sunday school. You're missing my point, though. Again, the message is not relevant -- I don't even have a real problem with Christian teachings. It's the fact that you're admittedly cramming it down the throats of little kids not old enough to make the decision for themselves, telling them not only to do unto others and honor thy father (great stuff), but also believe in our God or pay an eternal price. A little heavy, huh? Were all the other Churches that were planning to do this evil, money hungry hypocrites as well? Or is it possible that the majority of them had the same innocent illegal evening planned? I fixed that for you. I'm sure tons of them did, but they weren't stupid enough to charge admission and illegally use copyrighted materials. They just probably were going to have a potluck, not charge a fee and not have the NFL give two shits. At what point are you going to address the fact that the church a) was originally going to break the law, knowingly or not, and b) now still intends to break the law?

posted by wfrazerjr at 10:03 PM on February 03

At what point are you going to address the fact that the church a) was originally going to break the law, knowingly or not, and b) now still intends to break the law? My brother all I can say is, if it is indeed their intention to a) draw those who wouldn't normally attend, b) let those who have no other means to watch the s--- b--- join them in INNOCENT fellowship, or c) just to get together themselves outside of their homes (and or outside of your local dive) I propose this concerning the law: (Disclaimer: the following is part of a chapter from the Holy Bible, you do not have to read it, you have the choice to skip it if you desire. I am not here to force feed anyone.) Luke Chapter 6 1 And it came to pass on the second sabbath after the first, that he went through the corn fields; and his disciples plucked the ears of corn, and did eat, rubbing them in their hands. 2 And certain of the Pharisees said unto them, Why do ye that which is not lawful to do on the sabbath days? 3 And Jesus answering them said, Have ye not read so much as this, what David did, when himself was an hungred, and they which were with him; 4 How he went into the house of God, and did take and eat the shewbread, and gave also to them that were with him; which it is not lawful to eat but for the priests alone? 5 And he said unto them, That the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath. 6 And it came to pass also on another sabbath, that he entered into the synagogue and taught: and there was a man whose right hand was withered. 7 And the scribes and Pharisees watched him, whether he would heal on the sabbath day; that they might find an accusation against him. 8 But he knew their thoughts, and said to the man which had the withered hand, Rise up, and stand forth in the midst. And he arose and stood forth. 9 Then said Jesus unto them, I will ask you one thing; Is it lawful on the sabbath days to do good, or to do evil? to save life, or to destroy it? 10 And looking round about upon them all, he said unto the man, Stretch forth thy hand. And he did so: and his hand was restored whole as the other. If it is this Church's true desire to do the work of the Lord by setting a platform to make others aware of The Word of God (be it during commercials, halftime, or after the game) then there are Laws much higher than some petty copyright law you speak of. Scribes and Pharisees judged Jesus himself for breaking certain laws. Jesus said, "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil". Matthew 5:17 In my opinion, comparing the laws of man concerning a game, with the Laws of God and or the work there of is foolishness. A lot of Christians still remember what Sunday is for. Again, if it is this Pastor's intent to share the Word of God with those who attend before, during or afterward, then more power to him for using any and all means to draw a crowd.

posted by Bishop at 12:20 AM on February 04

Sunday is for football, right?

posted by tommytrump at 12:33 AM on February 04

then there are Laws much higher than some petty copyright law you speak of. Not in the eyes of the government.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 06:46 AM on February 04

Sunday is for football, right? ESPN keeps telling me Sunday's for bowling.

posted by dyams at 07:06 AM on February 04

A lot of Christians still remember what Sunday is for. Some might dispute your implication here Bishop (see number 2). I say TGISBS.

posted by danjel at 07:20 AM on February 04

Whatever Sunday is supposed to be about, I know i can read it in the Sunday Papers......Joe Jackson, from his 1979 album, Look Sharp!

posted by tommytrump at 08:48 AM on February 04

billsaysthis wrote: On the one hand this could be like trademark, in that you have to enforce control to maintain the legal right, so for the NFL legal minds there's no room for shades of gray. Copyright is different than trademark (and I realize that there is a trademark issue here, but that doesn't seem to be the focus of the debate) in the sense that you don't have to actively police a copyright the way you have to police a trademark. In trademark, the value of the mark comes in its role as a product identifier -- if others are using that mark without permission, it dilutes the association of the mark's owner with the particular products it is providing. In the copyright context, there is no such issue with dilution. If a copyright owner somehow communicated to an infringer that the owner was okay with the infringing use or was not going to take action, the infringing party could perhaps rely on some sort of implied license defense to suggest that the use was actually authorized and not infringing, but absent some sort of factor like that, merely standing by while others infringed does not waive rights to enforce a copyright. As to the church going forward with this notwithstanding the NFL's threat, I could understand the church saying "we actually think that the law as written does not apply to this situation," but I have a bit of a problem with the church saying that it can defy the law because its ends are more important than following the law. If the church has an issue with laws of this type, it should seek to change the law to not apply to churches. It wouldn't be the first time churches got an exemption from an otherwise generally-applicable law (for example, federal and state tax laws). Until we get into Martin Luther King, Jr. or Dietrich Bonhoeffer-type territory, Christians and churches should not simply pick and choose what laws will apply to them based on a sense of what is the greater good. What was that whole bit about rendering unto Caesar? Finally, as to force-feeding unwitting kids religion, I guess my open-ended rejoinder to that is that our culture (both U.S. and Canada and other nations/societies with a shared philosophical history) allows parents a fairly broad swath of discretion to direct the upbringing of their children.

posted by holden at 09:09 AM on February 04

If it is this Church's true desire to do the work of the Lord by setting a platform to make others aware of The Word of God (be it during commercials, halftime, or after the game) then there are Laws much higher than some petty copyright law you speak of. You know, this is pretty close to the same logic that is used by the religious nuts who bomb abortion clinics. To paraphrase a great man: "Ah, religion. The cause of, and solution to, all of the world's problems."

posted by grum@work at 09:17 AM on February 04

Again, the answer is, "It's a church, so screw the law." And you wonder why I don't send my kids there.

posted by wfrazerjr at 10:58 AM on February 04

I don't think anyone should send their kids to church, though it might be a good idea to go with them. I don't attend church on a regular basis, but when I do, I go with family.

posted by tommytrump at 02:09 PM on February 04

The projection TV at my place can go up to 108" so is it illegal to watch the game on a TeeVee that size even if I don't charge people? ESPN keeps telling me Sunday's for bowling Any day but Saturday is a good day to bowl.

posted by HATER 187 at 02:17 PM on February 04

I thought about what I said. Way too harsh. I have nothing against most churchgoers. I was one myself at one time. But the aroma of self-righteousness that wafts off many of them -- some of which is pretty ripe in here -- is what keeps me away. Well, that ... and the incident with the communion wine in the choir loft. The court order restricts me from saying anything else.

posted by wfrazerjr at 03:03 PM on February 04

You know, this is pretty close to the same logic that is used by the religious nuts who bomb abortion clinics Comparing Biblical Law to copyright law (which you conveniently forgot to highlight) is close to the same logic that is used to bomb abortion clinics? Grum of all the people on here I thought might fire back at my statements, you're the one who takes what I said that far out of context? From me basically saying, "there are higher laws (than some petty copyright law) for Mankind to live by. You hear the same logic that is used to bomb abortion clinics? Wow, yet another victim of either a Nun or a Priest. Not No longer in the eyes of the government Fixed. The same Government that considers you under oath in a Court of Law by placing your hand on a Bible, not on the Bill of Rights. The same Government founded on "In God We Trust" or: Amendment I Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. Or: When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation. We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. Are we talking about the same Government?

posted by Bishop at 09:41 PM on February 04

The same Government founded on "In God We Trust". The same government that used to not let women or people of color vote or even own land, that damn near wiped out an entire race and kept schools segregated until the 1960s? The government's changed, Bishop. You should look into it yourself.

posted by wfrazerjr at 08:55 AM on February 05

posted by wingnut4life at 03:59 PM on February 05

Wow, yet another victim of either a Nun or a Priest Wow, yet another person making a wild ass accusation. I've never met a nun or a priest in person, so I don't think my disdain for people who use religion as a crutch to explain their illegal actions comes from that. "there are higher laws (than some petty copyright law) for Mankind to live by" is the same logic as "there are higher laws (than some petty arson laws) for Mankind to live by", which is what those nutcases think when they bomb the abortion clinics. You basically says "Bible > societal law", and that's where it goes downhill. The same Government that considers you under oath in a Court of Law by placing your hand on a Bible, not on the Bill of Rights. Actually, your government allows people to swear an oath without using the bible, or any other religious text.

posted by grum@work at 04:16 PM on February 05

Stop crying about it, the NFL got it's way. You guys are right after all. Thank God for the copyright law. Take a Look at what it protected. It has certainly served Mankind to the highest degree. The same government that used to not let women or people of color vote or even own land, that damn near wiped out an entire race and kept schools segregated until the 1960s? We's be aloowed to vote? Well thank ya masta. We do be created equal after all. Cept in Flowerda where dey forgot to count all our votes the past 2 hellections and put whoever dey wanted in da WHITE house. Thank ya'll so much for all our new rights. And thank ya'll for takin Prayer outta schoollllls and replacin it wif da metal detectors. School shootins sure have went down since that happened. Dis Government sho nuff has changed for da better.

posted by Bishop at 09:04 PM on February 05

Stop crying about it, the NFL got it's way. You guys are right after all. Thank God for the copyright law. Take a Look at what it protected. It has certainly served Mankind to the highest degree. Wow. The church decides to break the law, gets called on it, and suddenly it's "persecution of the Christians" defense. And then you followed it up with a completely meaningless Amos'n'Andy routine, in some attempt deflect attention away from people dissecting a point you made about how the government was based on religion. Excellent work!

posted by grum@work at 11:13 PM on February 05

We's be aloowed to vote? Well thank ya masta. We do be created equal after all. Cept in Flowerda where dey forgot to count all our votes the past 2 hellections and put whoever dey wanted in da WHITE house. Thank ya'll so much for all our new rights. And thank ya'll for takin Prayer outta schoollllls and replacin it wif da metal detectors. School shootins sure have went down since that happened. Dis Government sho nuff has changed for da better. This is simply asinine.

posted by danjel at 03:06 AM on February 06

Which means it fits with the "it's a church, so is above the law" argument being used.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 05:54 AM on February 06

Which means it fits with the "it's a church, so is above the law" argument being used The first Amendment. If the Church says it's doing something according to their faith the following applies. Like it or not. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. Including copyright law. Now (according to Grum) I'm off to bomb an abortion clinic (which we all know is the next step us Christians take after arguing a point on Spofi). Talk about asinine. Excellent work.

posted by Bishop at 02:55 AM on February 07

Holy shit, what did I miss in here? Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. In other words, Congress can't pass a law saying you can no longer practice Catholicism, for example, or that everyone has to become a Catholic. Or, if I can prove that my religion dictate I wander around naked than there's nothing anyone can do about it. I don't think the church was trying to worship the Super Bowl, have the Super Bowl be central to their faith, nor can they prove they can not practice their religion without showing the Super Bowl. If that were the case than you could turn to the first amendment. It isn't.

posted by SummersEve at 06:31 AM on February 07

Now (according to Grum) I'm off to bomb an abortion clinic (which we all know is the next step us Christians take after arguing a point on Spofi). Again, simply asinine.

posted by danjel at 07:12 AM on February 07

Now (according to Grum) I'm off to bomb an abortion clinic (which we all know is the next step us Christians take after arguing a point on Spofi). Talk about asinine. Excellent work. Hahahahahahahaha! Thank you very much. I don't think I've ever driven someone bat-shit-crazy before by using reasoned arguments in a web forum. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. Including copyright law. Just a quick reminder: "free exercise" does not include breaking existing laws. It's why Satanists can't kill babies and call it "religious expression". It's why the crazy messiah-complex-polygamist in the western US was arrested for raping child-brides, even though he claims that it is part of his "religion". I'm not saying breaking a copyright law equals those crimes (even though I fully expect you to reply that I am), but you don't get to pick and choose which crimes are "breakable" and which aren't.

posted by grum@work at 11:35 AM on February 07

Yeah, it is settled law that the establishment clause only refers to laws aimed at religion. Laws that apply to everyone, but incidentally interfere with a religious ceremony are permitted, so long as they do not have as one of their aims interfering with religion. I'm pretty sure that the legislative history of the copyright law won't have contemplated such a law having any effect on the ability of people to worship. And, of course, the church's use of a secular activity to boost membership is certainly restricted. I doubt anyone would be defending their rights if they were offering to show something unsavory so that they could bring all the sinners in and save them.

posted by bperk at 12:36 PM on February 07

The first Amendment. If the Church says it's doing something according to their faith the following applies. Like it or not. That's the worst excuse for Constitutional scholarship I've been exposed to in many moons. Don't quit your day job.

posted by Venicemenace at 03:29 PM on February 07

Holy shit, what did I miss in here? Bishop.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 04:15 PM on February 07

They say theres a heaven for those who will wait Some say its better but I say it aint Id rather laugh with the sinners than cry with the saints The sinners are much more fun...

posted by MrFrisby at 05:13 PM on February 07

Or, if I can prove that my religion dictate I wander around naked than there's nothing anyone can do about it. They can just lock you up for indecent exposure.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 05:21 PM on February 07

Bishop: I had this long snappy, snarky comeback typed up but really, what's the point? You know how foolish your comments in this thread are without me having to say so.

posted by billsaysthis at 06:11 PM on February 07

I doubt anyone would be defending their rights if they were offering to show something unsavory so that they could bring all the sinners in and save them. That's a pretty good idea, though. If the church up the street were to have an occasional "Christy Canyon Night," I might be persuaded to stop in now and again. Assuming the communion wine was nice and cold, of course.

posted by wfrazerjr at 07:01 PM on February 07

C'mon, Fraze, you know better; red goes with porno. What are you, some kind of heathen?

posted by The_Black_Hand at 06:27 PM on February 08

How can a few of you silly infidels understand what I'm trying to say, when you have no knowledge of the true faith to which I am referring. The 1st amendment thing was to point out that Congress has in fact passed laws that conflict with the Church's freedom (solicitation and the like). The Church can't do anything to draw a crowd anymore. Just a quick reminder: "free exercise" does not include breaking existing laws Certain laws were created AFTER free exercise was established. Get it? Holy shit, what did I miss in here? Bishop TBH, again just stick to the topic man, if you have nothing to add, just enjoy or hate what you read. These types of personal comments you make hoping to get a laugh just waist time. No matter how many times you've been asked you just can't resist can you? See it leads to shit like this: Bishop: I had this long snappy, snarky comeback typed up but really, what's the point? You know how foolish your comments in this thread are without me having to say so Same goes for you. You should have just added your comment. Send this kind of shit in email. Maybe it wasn't as snappy as you thought it was, or you were hoping someone other than yourself thought you were snappy. You are also waisting space and time. Those who can't make an argument for or against the point are useless. At least some I disagree with argue their belief with substance. Simply typing, "I disagree and you're an idiot" is becoming real popular with those who think they have snappy comments to make.

posted by Bishop at 07:59 AM on February 09

You trying to teach a class in thread etiquette is the height of arrogance and irony combined. I think I'll call it Ironance. Thankfully, somebody's gonna post something new on the Front Page soon, and another example of your derailment skills will disappear into the ether.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 10:04 AM on February 09

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