5 Things An Athlete Should Consider Protecting
Like Floyd Mayweather said, “protect yourself at all times.” As an athlete, we are susceptible to people trying to take advantage of our IP, Likeness, Name, ETC. For athletes, outside of how you perform on the field and managing your money properly, protecting your image ranks high on the priority list of things to take care of. There have been many cases where an athlete doesn’t even own something that is associated with their name and in order to fix the problem they have to jump through hoops and pay excessive fees to fix the problem.
Here are 5 things athletes should immediately consider protecting. With that being said, it’s best to work with a lawyer in these situations as they can help navigate the ins and outs of the legal parameters you may need to properly make sure you are protected.
Your Name On Social Media
From a social media standpoint, you should make sure that your name is yours and verified. There have been countless cases of an athlete having to make a completely new social media or paid enormous amounts of money to get their own name to use on social media because a social spotter has their name. Imagine you are a popular player and people want to search for you to learn more about you but every time you type your name on Instagram, it goes to a page that has inappropriate content. While some people, will know it’s not you per se, it still is a bad look.
The best digital real estate is your domain name. Imagine not owning or even renting your own house and allowing others to make a profit off because you don’t run or have access to your domain. Your domain name is on your own website preferably in your name. For example, amobiokugo.com. The only person that should have rights to that website is me or someone from my team. If you aren’t proactive you can fall behind the wheel and pay for it in the long run.
Phrase or Nickname Associated With Your Brand
Marshawn Lynch has been able to carve out a very lucrative career on the business end because of his foresight and trademarking his nickname BeastMode. Now he’s able to work with various partners including Fanatics to license his name for merch, apparel, and other products. Every athlete has the capacity to do this. This may take a little bit more effort and requires a trademark application process, but once you do it. You can benefit for life.
Your logo is a representation of you. You as an athlete should be the sole owner of that logo. If you are working with a company or graphic designer to come up with what the logo will look like, make sure you have a lawyer helping you draft up agreements to make sure you own the rights to your logo. I’ve spoken multiple times on the many instances that athletes have had to go through simply because they didn’t own their logo before trying to make other business moves.
Your estate is what you leave behind once it’s all said and done. How will you plan for your family and the next generation? As an athlete, you work hard to provide for your family and loved ones. Many times, athletes for whatever reason wait until it’s too late to make sure everything is in order from an estate standpoint to protect your legacy. No one likes to talk about death but it’s something everyone will deal with, may as well work with a lawyer to get ahead of it and have peace of mind that your family and loved ones will be set up after you pass.
This article was written and provided as a courtesy of Amobi Okugo, a pro-soccer player and founder of A Frugal Athlete (AFA), an online media and consulting platform that promotes prudent financial practices and smart career decisions amongst professional and student-athletes. AFA offers services like financial coaching, revenue generation, and ideation strategy. Visit their website for further information.
Are You ready for Name, Image, and Likeness? Preorder the book, Athletes Making Moves, and join the launch so you are educated on how to identify your name, image, and likeness, profit from it, and protect it.