Olympics Copyright Insanity Rules Again: Gold Medal Winner Blocked From Sharing Her Own Victory

from the the-olympic-gold-in-copyright-abuse-goes-to dept

Elaine Thompson-Herah of Jamaica won both the women’s 100 meter and 200 meter gold medals at the Olympics this year, and then did the super piratey thing of… excitedly posting snippets of her victories to Instagram, which responded by blocking her account for copyright violations. She wrote the following in a now deleted tweet:

?I was blocked on Instagram for posting the races of the Olympic because I did not own the right to do so.”

We’ve already talked about the inanity of the way the Olympic Committee (and various broadcasters) abuse copyright to shut down viral moments, but this latest story really drives home a separate point: how copyright is not protecting the actual people who are entertaining the public. It is only being used to protect the giant organizations who profit from them.

After lots of people expressed reasonable outrage at this clearly ridiculous abuse of copyright law, Facebook claimed that it was all a mistake and her account was reinstated:

A spokesperson for Facebook told Reuters news agency that while the content had been removed, the suspension had been wrongly applied.

However, the International Olympic Committee seems to be insisting that Facebook did exactly the right thing:

?Rights Holding Broadcasters (RHBs) have the exclusive rights to broadcast the Olympic Games,? the IOC told Reuters.

?This includes distribution on social media, where athletes are invited to share the content provided by the RHBs on their accounts but cannot post competition content natively. Should that occur, the removal of such content from social media platforms happens automatically.?

The IOC says that enforcing its intellectual property ensures it can redistribute as much money as possible back into sport.

Yeah, right. The fact that a top athlete shared her own victories on social media does not take away any money from anyone. If anything it gets people more interested in the sport. Or, really, more interested in the athlete — but the IOC can’t have that, because that might mean the athlete doesn’t have to rely on the IOC to drip drip drip some tiny bit of money out, rather than taking its billions and giving it to Olympics officials.

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Companies: facebook, instagram, international olympic committee, ioc

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Comments on “Olympics Copyright Insanity Rules Again: Gold Medal Winner Blocked From Sharing Her Own Victory”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Given the supposed goal of the Olympics, there shouldn’t be an entrenched ruling committee handing out exclusive reporting, recording, and dissemination rights in the first place. It should be open to any human with the capacity to do any of those things.

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Anonymous Coward says:

it’s not just The Olympics where copyright has gone, litterally, way over the top and completely out of proportion, it’s more or less everywhere, over more or less, everything! if a person, as in this instance, wants to show others what she did in such a prestidious event, she should damn well be allowed to do so! without people like this, there would be no Olympics or any other competitive event! this is a disgraceful example of copyright extreme, copyright going totally wrong but it has all started with the USA entertainment industries and wont stop until they get complete control of the Internet! every single takedown event, court case and punishment is designed to take freedom away from people of what they wanna do. it wont end until the people lose the rights to freedom and privacy, while also losing the right to keep the same track on giant corporations and their top bosses, who are being given the right to track us and what we do, say, think, buy, share etc etc by the courts and politicians who are being amply rewarded for the help they are giving.

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That Anonymous Coward (profile) says:

Huh we are now letting college kids get paid for their likeness being used… how much does IOC pay the athletes for broadcasting their image & their media partners using their names without compensation.

I mean its not like the IOC even offers a stipend for them to compete in their event & then keeps all the cash & rights…

Its not about sports or price or anything noble… it was about making a buck for an entrenched group of grifters who seek rent & somehow manage to get paid even though everyone knows they are demanding kickbacks and special treatment while leaving the athletes to fend for themselves in a pandemic.

Perhaps its time to stop bidding on hosting this bullshit, no nation has managed to make a single cent after all the cost overruns & special favors are handed out.

Koby (profile) says:

Negotiating Leverage

Some states here in the U.S. have created a publicity right, whereby famous individuals can file a lawsuit against others if they use their likeness without permission for commercial gain. While I wouldn’t say that I’m a big fan of these laws, perhaps they could be used by athletes to turn the tables against the Olympic Committee. Athletes might be able to bargain for a little bit of sanity this way.

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That One Guy (profile) says:

‘We’re doing this for the athletes- I said stop trying to show off your accomplishments! Ahem, like I said it’s vital that we control every single scrap of content related to the event for their sake, it’s definitely not because of the power and profits exploiting them provides us.’

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