‘Brand police’ crack down on businesses using Olympic brand, or related words

Words like "Olympics", "Summer" and "Gold" are off limits to anyone except official sponsors.

There is a crackdown taking place in London right now, and we’re not talking about the thousands of troops deployed to secure the city in preparation of the 2012 Olympic Games.

We’re talking about the “brand police” — hundreds of workers for the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) and the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) employed to seek and penalize businesses that use unauthorized variations of the Olympic brand and its logos.

That could range from Olympic-themed drink specials at pubs to counterfeit merchandise sold on the street.  

“The London 2012 brand is also vital to the funding of the Games and is the London 2012 Organising Committee’s most valuable asset. To ensure we maintain both the emotional and commercial value of the brand, we need to carefully control its use and prevent its unauthorised exploitation,” LOCOG’s website states.

Official sponsors like Adidas, McDonald’s, Coca-Cola,  BP and Proctor & Gamble are the only companies entitled to use the London 2012 brand. The “brand police” are now patrolling for violations by businesses from restaurants to media outlets, in the biggest brand protection operation staged in the UK, according to the Independent.

Among the marks and words that are off-limits to anyone except commercial partners, sponsors, suppliers and licensees are the Olympic symbol, the Paralympic symbol, the London 2012 mascots, the words “London 2012″, “Olympic”, “Olympiad”, “Olympian”, “Paralympic” “Summer”, “Medals”, “Gold”, “Silver”, “Bronze” and the Olympic Motto: “Citius Altius.”

The LOCOG has made it clear that uniformed enforcement officers will be on the lookout for “ambush marketing,” which it describes as a business’ attempt to attach itself to a major event without paying sponsorship fees.

“Where we are made aware of ambush marketing of the Games and/or other unauthorised uses of the Games’ Marks, we must always seek to bring the infringement to an end,” the LOCOG states.

The Independent offers examples of advertisements that would be banned and those that are permitted under the LOCOG’s enforcement:

ALLOWED – Stratford Mansions. 1 & 2 bedroom flats, £220,000 to £350,000; 5 minutes’ walk to Stratford International Station; next to Olympic Park; 15 minutes commute to Canary Wharf.

BANNED – Simplefields Homes. An Olympic investment not to be missed! 1 and 2 bedroom flats, luxurious fittings, 5 minutes’ walk to Stratford International Station

ALLOWED: A blackboard sign outside the Red Lion saying: ‘Watch the Olympic Games here with a cold beer… Live coverage all day.’

BANNED: Brewer’s posters displayed outside the Red Lion with the message: Grogglington’s Bitter: Watch the Olympics here’

Have the Olympic games become too corporate?



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Mutant worms stay sober, even on alcohol

U.S. researchers have developed "mutant worms" that do not get drunk by alcohol, a breakthrough that could lead to new treatment for people trying to quit drinking

Local

K-9 nose helps capture $150K in cocaine at…

A furry, four-legged security agent helped authorities stop an illegal cocaine shipment from sneaking past JFK customs.

National

Minnesota man asked to leave Southwest flight after…

A man and his two sons were asked to leave a Southwest Airlines flight after the man sent a tweet complaining about being treated rudely by a gate agent.

National

Man sues hospital after surprise penis amputation

An Alabama man who went in to a hospital last month for a circumcision awoke after surgery to find his penis had been amputated, his lawyer said on Thursday.

Movies

Review: Brett Ratner's big 'Hercules' movie is small…

The latest "Hercules," starring Dwayne Johnson as the half-god beefcake of Greek myth, strips its hero and tale of most of its fantastical elements.

Arts

Scientists recreate world's smallest Monet copy

Scientists have reproduced a famous Impressionist painting using nano-printing, to create what has been described as the world's smallest work of art. Reworked at the…

Television

Jerry Seinfeld is ambidextrous, and other Reddit AMA…

See some of the weirder highlights of Jerry Seinfeld's recent Reddit AMA.

Going Out

Grab a pedestrian and start dancing at What…

As a New Yorker, I’ve mastered the art of focusing my gaze straight ahead. Though it occasionally piques my interest, the absurdities that play out…

NFL

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player…

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player rankings

U.S. Soccer

NYCFC announce signing of Frank Lampard

The tease of a big signing Thursday by new MLS side NYCFC ended up being one rumored for weeks. England midfielder Frank Lampard agreed to…

NBA

NBA great LeBron James sends 800 cupcake apologies…

By Kim PalmerCLEVELAND (Reuters) - NBA star LeBron James, whose recent return to the Cleveland Cavaliers in his home state of Ohio sparked a frenzy…

NFL

Jerry Reese confident with Giants, skipping countdown clocks…

Last year, Giants GM Jerry Reese installed a countdown clock in the locker room to inspire Big Blue to play in their own stadium for Super Bowl XLVIII.

Tech

Forget Wi-Fi: Li-Fi could be the future

Li-Fi technology – developed by Mexican company Sisoft – is wireless internet connectivity using specialized LED light.

Tech

Weather app Climendo might be the most accurate…

The wait for a truly accurate weather forecast could finally be over thanks to a nifty new app called Climendo.

Tech

Napkin Table puts focus off the phone and…

Michael Jan, a design student at Tunghai University in Taiwan, has invented a serviette-picnic blanket hybrid called the Napkin Table.

Style

Essie's new Color Boutique

Essie launches high-tech kiosks at major airports and malls across the country.