2012 London Olympics: ridiculous photography and social media restrictions


“On a very literal reading of the terms and conditions, there’s certainly an argument that the IOC could run that you wouldn’t be able to post pictures to Facebook. … It would appear that if you or I attended an event, we could only share our photos with our aunties around the kitchen table.” -Paul Jordan, legal adviser on Olympics-related regulations to sponsor and non-sponsor businesses, speaking to the Guardian

The 2012 London Olympics have been dubbed the first “social” Olympics, whatever that means. But, don’t be misguided and think that means spectators can post their photos and videos to facebook, or that athletes can tweet about their competition. There a whole host of restrictions on what sort of imagery, branding, and tweeting can and can’t be shared from the upcoming summer Olympics. Tickets to the Games state, ““Images, video and sound recordings of the Games taken by a Ticket Holder cannot be used for any purpose other than for private and domestic purposes and a Ticket Holder may not license, broadcast or publish video and/or sound recordings, including on social networking websites and the Internet more generally.” Olympic officials admit that these photo restrictions imposed on spectators are “unenforceable,” but they remain in place to protect organizations who have purchased media rights to the coverage. And in line with laws such as the Olympic Symbol etc. (Protection) Act 1995 and the London Olympic Games and Paralympic Games Act 2006, “branding police” will also be deployed in the Olympic Village to cover up the logos of companies that are not official sponsors of the games and make sure that non-affiliated companies don’t use the Olympics to drum up business. To report violations of any of these restrictions, there’s a website (inaccessible to the public) available to people involved in the Olympics that would fit right at home in Orwell: Olympic Games Monitoring.


  1. [...] According to tickets’ entry terms for event spectators: “Images, video and sound recordings of the Games taken by a Ticket Holder cannot be used for any purpose other than for private an 16a0 d domestic purposes and a Ticket Holder may not license, broadcast or publish video and/or sound recordings, including on social networking websites and the Internet more generally.” [...]

  2. [...] According to tickets’ entry terms for event spectators: “Images, video and sound recordings of the Games taken by a Ticket Holder cannot be used for any purpose other than for private and domestic purposes and a Ticket Holder may not license, broadcast or publish video and/or sound recordings, including on social networking websites and the Internet more generally.” [...]

  3. [...] According to tickets’ entrance terms for eventuality spectators: [...]

  4. [...] covered restrictions on photographers before, especially regarding coverage of police. Gizmodo’s recent article, 7 [...]

  5. [...] Internet more generally.” NOTE: PLEASE DON’T REPORT ME FOR SHARING THIS BRAND MARK WITH YOU -re http://www.dvafoto.com/2012/04/2012-london-olympics-ridiculous-photography-and-social-media-restrict… TAKEAWAY: We’ll remember the 2012 Olympics when the world finally did realize the ‘world is [...]

  6. [...] netissä. Olympiavieraiden kisoista ottamia kuvia, ei edes amatöörin kännykkäräpsyjä, ei saa laittaa [...]

  7. ben says:

    Wouldn’t taking a picture and sending it via email or instant message constitute “private or domestic purposes?” And how could they prevent you from doing it?

    [Reply]

  8. [...] covered the war on cameras many times before. In some cases, police harass photographers for taking pictures of police action. In other cases, [...]

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