Don't You Dare Show Olympic Spirit In The UK

from the from-pistil-to-pulpit dept

We’ve spent plenty of time over the years highlighting the ridiculousness surrounding the Olympics and their over-aggressive enforcement of IP laws (and even getting host nations to pass special trademark laws that only apply to the Olympics in some cases). But it’s really reaching positively ludicrous excesses in the UK. First up, a story of a flower shop being threatened for making a version of the Olympic logo out of tissue paper and hanging it in the shop window. You see, that kind of Olympic pride is only allowed if you’ve paid for the permission.

That story led us to an even crazier one. Apparently an 81-year old woman tried to sell a £1 doll at a church sale… but had it shut down because she’d dared to clothe the doll in a home made knit sweater that had a mini-Olympic logo on it.

It appears that they’ve turned this 81-year-old into someone who has realized the absurdity of over aggressive intellectual property protection:

The 81-year-old grandmother of six from King’s Lynn said the last thing she wanted to do was cause a crisis but attacked the rules as ‘absolutely ridiculous.

‘I thought that the hoops symbol was universal and I think it is disgusting that they can make rules about such little things, she said.

It seems that the Olympics would prefer that no one actually show any sort of pride or support for the Olympics unless it’s an official sponsor who paid for the privilege.

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Comments on “Don't You Dare Show Olympic Spirit In The UK”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

They missed a golden opportunity there. They could have had a whole series of doctors, in order. It would have been a thing of brilliance, memorialize on streaming sites for years to come.

Am I the only one who thinks the Olympic committee has lacked imagination for the past 30 years?

Anonymous Coward says:

only reason the Olympics was given to the UK this year was because no one else wanted it and everyone knew that the stupid English wouldn’t refuse the chance to hold it. a fortune has been spent on making everything needed to host the games and it has already been stated that the games will run at a loss. prestige is no good when the country is financially screwed, is it? considering what the UK is doing, even in these difficult times, i think the Olympic Committee should back off. if not, they should be told to back off!!

btr1701 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

> Chicago was a no-go because of a long-standing
> spat between IOC and AOC.

Well, that and the fact that the sort of laws the IOC requires countries pass in order to host the Olympics can’t be passed in America.

They apparently require counties to provide police with the power to enter private property without warrant and confiscate private property with no due process– all to protect sponsor exclusivity.

We’ve lost a lot in the realm of civil liberties lately (TSA, etc.), but that kind of nonsense is violates about 60% of the Bill of Rights and wouldn’t last 10 seconds in a court challenge.

As long as the IOC expects that sort of thing from host countries, America will never be able to host another Olympics.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:


St. Louis
Lake Placid (x2)
Los Angeles (x2)
Olympic Valley
Salt Lake City

Tell me again that U.S. laws wouldn’t bend if they had to? Because they have in the past just fine. (Before you tell me these rules are new, ask me about what it was like to live in Atlanta during the games.)

btr1701 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:


Show me an instance in any of those cities where the laws were changed to provide police with the power to enter private property without warrant and confiscate private property with no due process– all to protect sponsor exclusivity.

And since any such law would violate the 4th Amendment to the US Constitution, no individual city, county, or state even has the legal power to pass one.

hmm (profile) says:

Re: Re:

bit more than “a loss”. total cost for the olympics when you figure in security, air to ground (and air to air) missiles + the prime ministers personal bribes etc comes to around ?96billion….thats around $150 billion.

They try to claim its only ?15 billion by ignoring everything except the physical structure of the stadiums (which are being sold for literally ?1 after the games are over – which was the whole point – cream billions off the public to build something then sell it back to yourself for a nominal sum)…

TtfnJohn (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Actually, Baron de Cubertan (spelling is probably off) didn’t want any of this nationalistic stuff like medals being credited to participating countries but he had to back off when the Americans said they wouldn’t participate in the Athens Games if they didn’t get the chance to be loyal Americans on the podium. Not to mention the chance to show the Europeans just how much better Americans were at the sports being put on there.

Anonymous Coward says:

OMG, intellectual property is just so freakin’ evil! Thank God we have Pirate Mike to ferret out every last IP-is-so-freakin’-evil story for us. Without his OCD ass whining about IP every second of every day, I might forget how freakin’ evil it all is. TechDirt does a service to humankind.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

OMG, pirates are just so freakin’ evil! Thank God we have predictable Techdirt trolls to ferret out and debunk every last piracy apologist article. Without their OCD asses lurking and whining about piracy apologists every second of every day, I might forget how freakin’ evil they are. You do a service to humankind.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

“OMG, intellectual property is just so freakin’ evil! Thank God we have Pirate Mike to ferret out every last IP-is-so-freakin’-evil story for us. Without his OCD ass whining about IP every second of every day, I might forget how freakin’ evil it all is. TechDirt does a service to humankind.”

Broken record much

Its actually pathetically funny, do you think your having some sort of an affect or is it that you think you’re NOT having as much as an affect as you’d like?

Either way, good luck with that

Tech42 (profile) says:

We had the same problem

Same thing happened in Vancouver many, many times over.

In one example, Olympia Pizza, which has been in business here for a very long time, was threatened with a shutdown if they didn’t change their name (fortunately, a public outcry prevented that from happening).

The same scenario is played out everywhere, I suspect; we’re just not allowed to hear about it outside of any city currently afflicted with a case of Olympics.

TtfnJohn (profile) says:

Re: We had the same problem

Funny that all the hootin’ and hollerin’ by the 2010 organizing committee died down when the owner of Olympia Pizza hired a lawyer to explain the fact of life to them. As in Olympia isn’t Olympics and he didn’t have to change the rings because they were different colours and arranged differently. That said there was no chance of confusing the Olympia Pizza with the games.

All this IP shit by the Olympics really got started with the LA games where, among other things, they charged around collecting fees from everyone anywhere near infringing in that part of California demanded they close down or pay an enormous fee. That was part of the reason for the profit there. Well profit in the same way Vancouver/Whistler made a profit.

And you can bet your sweet bippie that the same shit is happening in Greater London right now.

Anonymous Coward says:

How about a little revenge.....

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”
possibly immature, but good fun!

Anonymous Coward says:

I have an idea… Fuck the Olympics I won’t even waste my time watching something that supports such absurd censorship.

In the recent years I’ve been watching more and more bullshit go on with them, but this is the year I decided to stop watching and supporting them period.

If they want to act like this towards people they can go fuck themselves.

peter says:

Another olympic 'f**k you'

A neighbour, well into sports and the Olympics, heard that the Olympics were calling out for volunteers for marshaling. He has done a fair amount of it for local sporting event so decided to take part.

When he contacted them, he was told that he was most welcome but he had to be at location before any public transport is available, was not allowed to park a car anywhere, had to provide all his own meals, refreshments etc, all for no wages and no contribution to his expenses.

When he protested, he ws basically told that he was lucky to be allowed to be part of the Olympics and they couldn’t see the problem.

He decided there was better use for his time.

timmaguire42 (user link) says:

I never understood how a small group of oligarchs got such total worldwide control over a 2,500 year old Greek tradition.

They did not invent the term, they did not define the term, they did not popularize the term, they have added nothing to its value.

Who’s leg did they hump to get what is really unprecedented control over the terminology of someone else’s creation?

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