Olympics Crack Down On Anyone Mentioning Them Without Paying... As White House Tells Everyone To Set Up Olympics Parties

from the ip-violations-galore! dept

We've covered for years how overly aggressive the Olympics are in protecting their "IP" -- to the point that they often get special laws passed that grant them extra IP rights, which they use to block pretty much anyone who hasn't paid from using the word "Olympics" at all, or even having a non-sponsoring brand shown anywhere (yes, even if that means taping over the brand on toilet fixtures in bathrooms around the Olympic grounds). Hell, we just reported on the Olympics going after a 30-year-old restaurant named Olympic Gyros.

So it struck me as somewhat surprising to get an email from the White House, saying that I should create my own (or join in an existing) "Olympic Fun Day Meetup."
Of course, as a participating country, I'm sure that the Olympics grants the US government wider leverage in using its name, but if anyone else in the country suggested something as crazy as creating a special "meet up" around the Olympics, how quickly do you think the Olympics would send in the lawyers to demand a takedown?


Reader Comments (rss)

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    Ninja (profile), Jul 19th, 2012 @ 11:38am

    Actually this is just genius. Set up a Govt sponsored incentive for ppl to infringe. Then sue everybody. Guaranteed money!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 11:39am

    The Olympics and Apple are the same!

     

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    BentFranklin (profile), Jul 19th, 2012 @ 11:48am

    As angry as I am about Obama/Democratic Party complicity in IP bullshit, the stain is worse on Romney for having actually run an Olympics. You couldn't possibly come so close to that kind of corruption without getting it on yourself as well.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 11:48am

    best bet would be to totally ignore the Olympics completely, until the Commission come to their senses. the event is supposed to inspire competitiveness and friendship, not give a few idiots the right to change things as they see fit. they act like the USTR. not elected by the people but seem to think they have the powers of the Almighty!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 11:49am

    Look closer: "c" in "Olympic" on the picture is not a Latin "c," (U+0063) it is a Cyrillic "с," (U+0441) which results in a separate, non-infringing word.

     

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    Nick Dynice (profile), Jul 19th, 2012 @ 11:53am

    Has anyone seen the Citibank commercial where they use their points to rent a large outdoor TV to watch the Olympics? Somehow I think the Olympic trademark police would find this truly offensive if anyone did it in real life.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WpQ5Ew3YnKs

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 11:55am

    THEY ARENT bother us hackers

    https://www.uha1.com

    gee wonder why they dont want to fuck around ?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 11:56am

    I think they might just be trying to levarage the Streisand effect to their benefit.

     

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    fogbugzd (profile), Jul 19th, 2012 @ 12:02pm

    I am tempted to have an Unolympic Meetup. A bunch of us would get together and not watch the Olympics together.

     

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    sehlat (profile), Jul 19th, 2012 @ 12:37pm

    Actually, this whole situation is very useful.

    It's a perfect case study of IP maximalism running amok.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 12:41pm

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but in the US isn't it the USOC that owns the rights to the word 'Olympic?' I remember the SF Arts and Athletics case from California.

    If so, the US Gov't can encourage this without worrying, but a private party cannot.

     

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    gorehound (profile), Jul 19th, 2012 @ 12:50pm

    I would rather not bother to watch the Olympics.Not being a very friendly Event at all.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 1:31pm

    so, just send the bill and/or the take down/fine etc to The White House and all should be good, right?

     

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  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 1:38pm

     

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    Jes Lookin, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 2:14pm

    Or Could It Be...

    The return of the Soup Nazi ! You pay for me to look away - or - no Olympics for you ! Unfortunately, this time there is nothing good about his product, just US corporate swill.

     

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    Not Mein Kampf, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 2:31pm

    Another Olympic sided tragedy

    Another Olympic sided tragedy, the president will be arrested and sent to Mount ? for prosecution.

     

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    krudler (profile), Jul 19th, 2012 @ 3:03pm

    Fight back...

    Tweet how you're using non sponsors brands during the Olympics, and piss off those sponsors and LOCOG:

    "I'm eating #Burgerking at #London2012, and wearing my #Nike. #Mcdonald's fries are shit"

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 3:07pm

    Everyone I talk to, seems to be boycotting The Olympics. ( I hope I don't get sued for typing the word). Do to their over excessive copyright enforcement. Some are even boycotting buisenesses that support them. So no go on any
    fun this Time around. Sorry White House.

     

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    Olympic Coward, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 3:21pm

    Hey, Olympics...

    Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics Olympics

    Now sue me!

     

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    Dave (profile), Jul 19th, 2012 @ 4:04pm

    OLYMPICs

    I think it works like this:
    1. Olympic show is expensive.
    2. City hosting show must fund it, and provide venue.
    3. City appeals to corporations for money, with IOC blessing
    4. Corporations, just because they can, impose severe restrictions on city and IOC as condition of granting money.
    5. City and IOC, in order to protect their funds, go completely off the end of the pier. Remember, the corporations can pull their money whenever they like for whatever reason, or none.

    IMHO, said corporations should be held legally responsible for ALL funding after they agreed. This especially means funding the athletes, instead of making them beg for money.

    As far as I'm concerned, this whole thing is a total cluster*^$% and has been getting worse each time it's put on. I have NO INTENTION of wasting my time or resources on it. If, in the bloody unlikely event, I need information, there's always the internet.

     

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    ebilrawkscientist (profile), Jul 19th, 2012 @ 4:36pm

    olympiclusterfsck

    o l y m p i c l u s t e r f s c k

     

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    temoi, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 4:41pm

    Ok then olmypbitches find me after I type this, no nastia liukin, no wstching your yaoi parade.

     

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    hank, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 4:51pm

    Official Intellectual Property blog of the 2012 London Olympic Games

    somehow i managed to comment on the wrong post... whoops.

    Here's an idea, right before the opening ceremonies, redo the header of techdirt to announce that Techdirt is the "The Official Intellectual Property blog of the 2012 London Olympic Games" and state factually it's an obvious ironic parody. Let's see how many hurried morons come out to play.

     

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    Rex, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 5:40pm

    Olympics

    Hit 'em where it hurts: the pocketbook.

    I pledge that for 10 years I will boycott the sponsors of the US Olympic Committee as shown on this page:

    http://www.teamusa.org/Sponsors.aspx

    I will not buy or use their products or those of their subsidiaries and affiliates, e.g. NBC, a property of GE.

    I will renew my boycott annually until the USOC renounces and ceases their heavy handed tactics and their sponsors pays treble reparations, including legal fees, to those it harmed by their legal actions. Additionally, the USOC will have to announce their compliance by publishing full page advertizements in the major newspapers in every US state for 10 consecutive days.

    Don't laugh. I have a boycott list. Some residents of that boycott list are there for "Life". AT&T has been there since 2001 (remember North Point Communications? I do) and will remain there until it reimburses me for my losses, treble. Sears Roebuck (rule of 78 interest charges in 1977). I haven't bought anything there since. -- I know hundreds of people and businesses with boycott lists. Once your on the list, you've lost a customer for a long time (Target ... oh, nevermind). I respect my boycott lists and do not patronize those companies on them.

    So, USOC, FOAD. ... whew! I feel better now.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 7:47pm

    I think I should set up a 'Fuck the Olympic Committee' block party. Would be a great way to show them just what we truly feel about the commercialization of the games.

     

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    FM Hilton, Jul 19th, 2012 @ 8:26pm

    Not the only instance

    Yeah, the Olympic Committee is way over-protective of their brand, all right-in Maine, there was a group of people who wanted to hold an "RedNeck Olympics", and the IOC came down on them hard, issuing a 'cease and desist' letter to them.
    http://bangordailynews.com/2011/08/12/news/lewiston-auburn/redneck-olympics-organizer-ready-t o-face-u-s-olympic-committee/

    The "Rednecks" said they were disappointed in that idea, and thought it was highly unfair.

    Just last week, they were still using the brand. Oh, well.

     

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    TeaMan, Jul 20th, 2012 @ 12:40am

    Olympians

    I'm not really sure how these people can have any rights to a 'Olympic' when it originates from the Greek Olympics in Olympia back to 776 B.C. Wouldn't the ancient Greeks be the ones with the rights to that term, and I'm sure that would have expired by now, unless they paid politicians of course. I wonder how much money they owe the Greeks for unlawful use, of not only the term, but the games themselves?

     

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      Dave (profile), Jul 20th, 2012 @ 12:58am

      Re: Olympians

      There ya go. THAT'S a great copyright claim. Maybe it'll get Greece out of the doghouse. We, the rest of the world, owe Greece US$150,000 PER athlete, per game for every Olympic Game performance ever held. Should be about 100 times the total GNP of Earth.

       

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    streetlight (profile), Jul 20th, 2012 @ 7:07am

    Reminds me of the NFL's limits on the use of the term

    Advertisers and others allegedly can't use the trademarked/copyrighted term for the Big Game played annually in the US in late January or early February, so the invention of the term "The Big Game." Perhaps for subject term we should use something like, "The Quadrennial Summer Competitions,", i. e., QSC, and "The Quadrennial Winter Competitions,", i. e., QWC.

    Ridiculous!

     

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    Mr Fbuh, Jul 22nd, 2012 @ 12:48pm

    Olympic Logo

    Fun fact: The five interconnecting rings were originally a star shape, which was an homage to Aphrodite. The path of Venus traces a perfect star shape in the sky throughout the year. They changed it because people are morons.

     

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