Olympics Can't Handle An Official Parody Twitter Account, So Twitter Takes It Down

from the the-official-department-of-the-2012-london-olympics dept

We've discussed a number of times how ridiculously over-aggressive the Olympics can be when it comes to anything close to an IP issue -- even to the point where it gets host cities to agree to pass exceptional IP laws that only apply to issues that the Olympics chooses. The Olympics are especially concerned with any non-sponsor brand even being seen. That means that non-sponsor brands, even if they're the brand of a toilet, will get "taped over." So you can guess at just how insanely over aggressive the Olympics can be to anyone who comes near its own marks.

And that results in situations like the one where the London Olympics complained about a parody Twitter account, billed as the "official protesters of the London 2012 Olympic Games." This is obviously a joke. It's a parody on the fact that the Olympics seems to find an "official" sponsor of everything, so why not mock it using parody, which is widely seen as protected speech. But, not here. Apparently after the Games complained to Twitter, Twitter suspended the entire account and said it needs to no longer rely on trademarks, like the Olympics' logo.

Except, that defeats the whole purpose. How can you parody something when you're not even allowed to show what it is that you're parodying? Twitter is good on a bunch of issues, but on this one, it looks like it may have rushed ahead and shut down an account too quickly.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 24th, 2012 @ 11:12am

    The Olympics are an abomination and an affront to mankind. Over the last few decades, they have been turned into one giant commercial sponsorship pigfest and should be eliminated for the sake of all that is right and proper.

    Who gives a shit about them anyway?

    Boycott.

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 24th, 2012 @ 11:18am

    They should just make a new logo with 5 overlapping ovals, squares, pentagons or hexagons. Or does The Olympics have a trademark on all "sets of 5 overlapping shapes, each shape distinguished by a different primary color"?

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 24th, 2012 @ 11:20am

    This is why I don't watch sports anymore.

    Not just the Olympics, racing, football, tennis, baseball, basketball, swimming, athletics, boxing.

    Sports are good when you do them, not to watch others do, it builds nothing when you don't practice.

     

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  4.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 24th, 2012 @ 11:20am

    I told ya, this censoring of the internet drivel was bullshit

    /s

     

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  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 24th, 2012 @ 11:21am

    i think maybe they should look at what the whole Olympics is supposed to represent, ie, competition. the way they perform, there is no competition, only their way or the highway. just look at what those involved in the Olympic Committee do. not a whole lot, except protecting the own cushy job! i wonder what the threat was that The Olympic idiots used against Twitter, not that one was needed!? did they, perhaps, get some lessons from the entertainment industries? they usually go hell for leather into shutting down whatever it doesn't like and think later!

     

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  6.  
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    WysiWyg (profile), May 24th, 2012 @ 11:21am

    Re:

    If not they will force UK to pass a law that makes it so. ;-)

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 24th, 2012 @ 11:26am

    Mitt Romney likes to use his Salt Lake City Olympics experience as a resume builder. I think quite the opposite.

     

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  8.  
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    Ben (profile), May 24th, 2012 @ 11:46am

    Re:

    And this is exactly why the ancient Olympic Games were ended -- over control of brand deity marketing. Hermes -- "official sponsor of the 5 stadia run", with the other gods complaining about not having their marks visible as well; Apollo was known to be especially incensed.

     

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  9.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 24th, 2012 @ 11:49am

    The Olympics were supposed to showcase humanity's highest physical achievements in strength, agility, resilience...

    Instead, it seems that they only highlight how douchy and greedy humans can be...

     

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  10.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 24th, 2012 @ 11:50am

    So much for Twitter "defending Internet freedom"

    And by the way: you don't really own your own tweets: Twitter hands your data to the highest bidder, but not to you

     

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  11.  
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    Lord Binky, May 24th, 2012 @ 11:52am

    So they just need to make another one," Officially unofficial protesters of the London 2012 Olympic Games."

     

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  12.  
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    PopeRatzo (profile), May 24th, 2012 @ 11:52am

    Time to stop this nonsense

    The Olympics has become a horrible twisted version of what it was meant to be. It's time to put an end to this ridiculous quadrennial idiocy.

    I remember loving the Olympics as a kid. Now, I refuse to watch a single event because of the way it's been turned into a nightmare pro-corporate festival of consumption.

    In fact, if I see a company sponsoring the Olympics in any way, I go out of my way to NOT buy anything from them. There are enough companies out there to get my business. If all I can do to show my disgust what what the Olympics has become is not buy something, then that's exactly what I will do.

    If the Olympics is really a "movement", then it's the kind of movement I had after my oatmeal and coffee this morning.

     

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  13.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 24th, 2012 @ 11:52am

    Re: Re:

    I wonder if the Olympic committee used to shut down forums back then too?







    PS: I know that I'm mixing Roman and Greek culture, but the joke doesn't work if I call it an Agora

     

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  14.  
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    Lord Binky, May 24th, 2012 @ 12:01pm

    Re: Time to stop this nonsense

    How much do you think it sucks for Olympic athletes now? The prestige behind it is definitely waning.

     

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  15.  
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    hmm (profile), May 24th, 2012 @ 12:07pm

    Re: Re:

    Force? there ain't no force about it.

    Cameron and his cabinet are already bought and paid for with ready cash bribes......

     

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  16.  
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    hmm (profile), May 24th, 2012 @ 12:09pm

    official

    So far, I've seen the official toothbrush, chocolate bar, cigarette (that was unofficially 'official' due to advertising laws), toilet paper, wooden kitchen surface and printer paper of the olympic games....compared to this christmas is a model of anti-consumerism.

     

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  17.  
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    OldMugwump (profile), May 24th, 2012 @ 12:27pm

    I remember loving the Olympics as a kid. Now, I refuse to watch a single event because of the way it's been turned into a nightmare of nationalism.

    Oh - it's Bulgaria vs. Greece. Like I give a damn about Bulgaria or Greece.

    The original Olympics were about competition between athletes - not nations.

     

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  18.  
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    Demoliri (profile), May 24th, 2012 @ 12:40pm

    Re: official

    Toilet paper?! So now you can officially wipe your own ass with an olympic sponsor? Where do I sign up?

     

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  19.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), May 24th, 2012 @ 12:49pm

    Re:

    Weird, when I was a kid, it was always a competition between countries, esp. U.S. vs. Soviet Union.

     

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  20.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), May 24th, 2012 @ 12:50pm

    Now when I see the Olympic rings, I know not to buy whatever product it's on.

     

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  21.  
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    Overcast (profile), May 24th, 2012 @ 1:11pm

    And yet just another year I will skip watching them at all. It's not about sporting anymore - it's about advertising and control.

    Keep it, I can find better things to do.

     

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  22.  
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    Overcast (profile), May 24th, 2012 @ 1:11pm

    Now when I see the Olympic rings, I know not to buy whatever product it's on.

    ^^^ Oh and that too ^^^

     

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  23.  
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    PopeRatzo (profile), May 24th, 2012 @ 1:12pm

    Weird, when I was a kid, it was always a competition between countries, esp. U.S. vs. Soviet Union.

    I'm OK with competitions between countries done via sport. I'm not OK with competition between corporations done via exploitation of young people. Those stars that people will be tuning in to see aren't getting a penny, but the corporations will be raking in the dough.

    The Olympics has become corporatized human trafficking.

     

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  24.  
    identicon
    DogBreath, May 24th, 2012 @ 2:21pm

    A simple way around it ...

    maybe they should do something like what I did back in 2010:

    http://i.imgur.com/gJUHM.png

     

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  25.  
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    TDR, May 24th, 2012 @ 2:57pm

    As Yogurt would say:

    "Merchandising! Merchandising! Where the real money from the event is made! Olympics the coloring book! Olympics the T-shirt! Olympics the breakfast cereal! Olympics the lunch box! Olympics the flamethrower! The kids love this one."

    That's about all the Olympics is about these days.

     

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  26.  
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    TDR, May 24th, 2012 @ 3:01pm

    And something I've wondered for a while is just how many, if any, of Micheal Phelps' gold medals are actually legit? It seems very unlikely that anyone could get that many without being deliberately allowed to do so.

     

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  27.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 24th, 2012 @ 3:11pm

    I volunteered at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta. (Yes, the Olympics with the bomb and the FBI arresting the wrong guy.) I thought it would be very different from what it was. While my fellow workers and volunteers were awesome, the policies were asinine. It was like being in a volunteer factory. Plus, they tried to polish up everything so no one would realize we were using an abandoned parking lot (that probably used to be a site for drug deals) as a bus terminal.

    You know all those community leaders who get to carry the torch for 1/4 mile through their hometowns? If they want to keep the torch they carried (the flame is what's passed - the torches are not), they are asked to pay for the privilege. It's a revenue stream for the IOC, not a way of honoring people who've worked hard to help their community's grow stronger.

     

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  28.  
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    nospacesorspecialcharacters (profile), May 24th, 2012 @ 3:14pm

    Official Dissenting Comment of the Olympics 2012

    All the Olympics has come to represent is IP enforcement and greed. I wish they would just sod off.

    This comment is the Official Dissenting Comment dissenting the Olympics and all it stands for. All the other comments on this blog are not official dissent and are therefore unauthorised.

    Remove all the other comments or I shall refuse to host my official comment on your blog.

     

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

  29.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 24th, 2012 @ 3:39pm

    Re: Re:

    See?

     

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  30.  
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    bill, May 24th, 2012 @ 6:06pm

    Is this with that virgin lady?

     

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  31.  
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    hfbs (profile), May 25th, 2012 @ 12:21am

    No, the thing that gets me about London 2012 is that they've installed SAM (surface-to-air missile) sites around the arena place. Fucking SAMs. As if they think some terrorist is going to fucking crash a plane into the arena. Jeez, over-reaction much? Loosen up..

     

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

  32.  
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    Niall (profile), May 25th, 2012 @ 2:41am

    Re:

    Plus more troops than we have in Afghanistan, plus....
    Ugh. How to get a police state without anyone noticing. Bread and circuses, literally.

    On a lighter note, I was amused at seeing someone's comment that their mother was praying to remove the 'evil influences of Zeus' when the Olympic torch went past. Was Zeus the main deity of the original Olympics?

     

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  33.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 25th, 2012 @ 5:04am

    Re:

    London has had SAM sites around "high risk" sites since September 11th -- they just aren't that well advertised (for obvious reasons)

     

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  34.  
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    Marcel de Jong (profile), May 25th, 2012 @ 5:22am

    Re: Re: official

    I wouldn't even take the time to set it on fire, if someone gave me a roll of Olympic toiletpaper for free.

     

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  35.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 25th, 2012 @ 7:01pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    You are also ignoring proper Latin grammar.

     

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  36.  
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    lrobbo (profile), May 27th, 2012 @ 10:55am

    I instinctively feel an aversion to any product associated with the Olympics . . .

     

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

  37.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 29th, 2012 @ 1:59pm

    Here's a little project - please publicise it as far as possible.


    Please post on twitter support for non sponsors of the Olympics, in a way that will annoy the Olympic committee. Even better if you pick corporate giants which are not whiter than white too. E.g. "I'm drinking #Pepsi at the #london2012 Olympics" or "I'm running in my #Nike gear at #london2012"

    This should annoy all concerned, and it's all perfectly legal!

    possibly immature, but good fun!

     

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

  38.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 29th, 2012 @ 2:02pm

    Re:

     

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

  39.  
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    Mervelbeast, Jul 5th, 2012 @ 4:46am

    Sponsors

    What pissed me off was that when I volunteered for the Olympics and Paralympics, the training included how to safeguard the sponsors interests by learning to spot things that could undermine them!

    I was prepared to support the athletes and visitors for no free, but no way on Earth was I going to work for nothing to spot things that might affect the corporate sponsors profits!

    Plus, as I am disabled, I was only accepted to volunteer for the Paralympics. Well we wouldn't want a cripple spoiling the aesthetics of the 'Big Event' now could we?

     

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


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