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Old 02 October 2009, 11:24   #1
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Help with Olympic issues.

Here is something for the lawyers out there!! I presently own domain name www.olympicribs.co.uk
and intended to develop this for the Weymouth and Bray events, BUT here is the mess which I have cut from the 2012olympic site on branding- This sets out what can and cant be used:- BIT LONG WINDED http://www.london2012.com/about/our-...-the-brand.php

"All of the official names, phrases, trade marks, logos and designs related to the 2012 Games and the Olympic and Paralympic movements (collectively referred to as the ‘Games' Marks’) are protected by the law in a variety of ways.

The following are some of the current items that make up the Games' Marks:
•The Olympic symbol
•The Paralympic symbol
•The London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic emblems
•The words ‘London 2012’ and ‘2012’
•The words ‘Olympic’, ‘Olympiad’, ‘Olympian’ (and their plurals and things very similar to them – eg ‘Olympix’
•The words ‘Paralympic’, ‘Paralympiad’, ‘Paralympian’ and their plurals and things very similar to them – eg ‘Paralympix’
•The Olympic motto: ‘Citius Altius Fortius’ / ‘Faster Higher Stronger’
•The Paralympic motto: ‘Spirit in Motion’
•The Team GB logo
•The Paralympics GB logo
•The British Olympic Association logo
•The British Paralympic Association logo
•London2012.com (and various derivatives)
How are the Games' Marks protected?
The Games' Marks are legally protected by a variety of means. Some are registered trademarks, and some have copyright protection.

In the UK special laws have been passed to give extra protection to some of the Games' Marks:the Olympic Symbol etc. (Protection) Act 1995 (OSPA) protects the Olympic and Paralympic symbols, mottos and various words.

Added protection is provided by the London Olympic Games and Paralympic Games Act 2006 (the ‘2006 Act’). This prevents the creation of an unauthorised association between people, goods or services and London 2012.

If you want to know more about these special laws, we have produced a detailed document providing information on them.

What can’t you do?
The unauthorised use of any of the Games' Marks (or any other marks or logos that are confusingly similar to, or likely to be mistaken for, them) is strictly prohibited.

For example, without the London 2012 Organising Committee's written consent, it is unlawful to use the Olympic symbol, the London 2012 logo or the mark ‘London 2012’ in the course of trade.

So they cannot, for example, be used on goods, in business names, on business papers or in advertising.

It is also unlawful, whether through the use of the Games' Marks or otherwise, to falsely represent any association, affiliation, endorsement, sponsorship or similar relationship with London 2012, the British Olympic and/or Paralympic teams, or any other part of the Olympic and/or Paralympic Movements.

When can the Games' Marks be used?
The Games' Marks can be used with the authorisation of the London 2012 Organising Committee.

Authorisation will only be given to official sponsors, licensees and non-commercial partners.

There are very few instances when the Games' Marks can be used without our consent.

The words protected by OSPA can, however, be used in editorial news pieces without our authorisation and journalists are, in certain circumstances, able to use our emblem etc to illustrate an editorial piece about the Games.

This exception does not however apply to businesses which produce newsletters, client bulletins or other marketing collateral.

Another exception applies to businesses which have traded under an ‘Olympic’ name for many years (pre 1995). The exception allows them to continue to do this.

There are a few other defences under OSPA and the 2006 Act. Further details of these are given in our information on Statutory Marketing Rights.

Do not use the Games' Marks unless you are sure that a defence applies to you."


I cannot for the love of money get an answer out of the 2012 Olympic people about using my domain name in a new website heading,(NEITHER CAN MY WEB DESIGNER) So lets see who on this site can point me either to an answer or to Seb Coe's e mail address!!!!
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Old 02 October 2009, 11:58   #2
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My late father was an attorney here in the US.

When I was a kid, a Japanese company was trying to begin exporting fishing eqpt to the US. Their name?: Olympic.

Bottom line was that they were forced to change their company ID, and (I believe) ended up selling under the name "Penguin" (and no, I have no idea why they thought the names "Penguin" and "Olympic" would conjure up the same customer confidence.)

I'm sure your legal system is quite different, but apparently the IOC has pretty long arms.


Luck;

jky
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Old 02 October 2009, 12:15   #3
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....and yet Olympic Airways and Olympic Holidays seem to trade? (And Olympicribs.com).

I would imagine you've picked a domain that you'll find difficult to use.

Penguinribs beckons!
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Old 03 October 2009, 17:52   #4
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In the UK under Labour they are too busy making up new laws to bother enforcing existing ones.

Even big firms like Tesco and DHL seem to turn a blind eye to people ripping off their logos even after it has been pointed out to them - these days as long as people keep getting their pay they don't seem to actually care what goes on.
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Old 03 October 2009, 17:56   #5
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http://www.olympic.com/

These seem to get away with it - they make paint!!!

And look at their logo..........
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Old 04 October 2009, 02:48   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by codprawn View Post
http://www.olympic.com/

These seem to get away with it - they make paint!!!

And look at their logo..........
But I wonder if they had operations before the date our 2102 team seemed to have protected which from the rules is 1995, as you said olympicribs.com exists.
I spoke with their office again on Friday but they were all away on a jolly waiting to see the IOC decision on location for 2016 olympics. So not one person in their offices to talk to me. They have my details again so lets see if they bother or if they are too busy on government outings
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Old 04 October 2009, 03:46   #7
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A good few years ago before the London Boat Show moved from Earls Court I started up a web site www.londonboatshow.info which had reviews of places to stay and eat as well as maps with various transport options. It was a free site born from an observation that from year to year places would close or change hands leaving people dazed and confused.

I came under huge, I do mean HUGE, pressure from the British Marine Federation to hand the domain over to them. Of course I did...

... They did nothing with it, it expired and came up again as available and then someone else did something with it for a while.

The moral of this story is that no matter how nice it would be do not bother, they have too much weight.

PS For a while the .net version was an escort agency.
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Old 04 October 2009, 04:24   #8
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C2,

Assuming the info from the 2012 site is correct (i.e. the relevant legislation does restrict use of the word "olympic" - which I can imagine it does) then clearly you are on some dodgy ground. And sods law will be they ignore you until you have invested the time and money and then they get shirty about it?

Presumably however there would be a possibility to license the legitiamite use of the name. I could imagine that being a/the official site for "spectator and support boats" would have some value? Interestingly at that point your opinion would presumably switch from "I can't believe how restrictive they are, I'm just trying to make some ecconomic gain from the 2012 event we are all sponsorring with our taxes" to "I'm the official olympic rib supplier - god help anyone else who might try to create an association with the event"

Interestingly London 2012 is protected - but Weymouth 2012 is not? So if you are quick you could register "RIBSforWeymouth2012.co.uk"?
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Old 04 October 2009, 04:25   #9
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http://www.olympicvarnish.co.uk/
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Old 04 October 2009, 06:03   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Polwart View Post
C2,

Assuming the info from the 2012 site is correct (i.e. the relevant legislation does restrict use of the word "olympic" - which I can imagine it does) then clearly you are on some dodgy ground. And sods law will be they ignore you until you have invested the time and money and then they get shirty about it?

Presumably however there would be a possibility to license the legitiamite use of the name. I could imagine that being a/the official site for "spectator and support boats" would have some value? Interestingly at that point your opinion would presumably switch from "I can't believe how restrictive they are, I'm just trying to make some ecconomic gain from the 2012 event we are all sponsorring with our taxes" to "I'm the official olympic rib supplier - god help anyone else who might try to create an association with the event"

Interestingly London 2012 is protected - but Weymouth 2012 is not? So if you are quick you could register "RIBSforWeymouth2012.co.uk"?
Clearly you operate on another level to me

I never saw the olympicribs domain name causing me an issue until we started to build a new site for it, Yes correct we were looking to generate work from the olympics and I had signed into their media campaigns and would be notified of all contracts going out on offer, but then I did not expect to see RIBs wanted for the events until maybe next year and many companies will be there. You may see the draft olympics website active sooner now as clearly Weymouth opens doors, excellent spot www.......2012 domain name now purchased through my accounts, became too focussed on sorting the olympicribs issue rather than as Polwart did, steppped outside the box.

update- Just checked search engines and ribs4weymouth.co.uk in the bag so may leave olympicribs and just handle new web pages onto this domain, will be interesting now if the IOC jump on this area , there are loads of similar ones but it means I should be able to run two web sites for rib charters etc at olympic venues and keep mine running but linking in which is what I planned a few years ago with olympicribs
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Old 04 October 2009, 09:12   #11
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Originally Posted by jyasaki View Post
Bottom line was that they were forced to change their company ID, and (I believe) ended up selling under the name "Penguin" (and no, I have no idea why they thought the names "Penguin" and "Olympic" would conjure up the same customer confidence.)
I'd trust a penguin on any given business deal far sooner than I'd ever trust an IOC official on the same.
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Old 04 October 2009, 11:04   #12
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I also think you're on dodgy ground. In fact now, having registered and made an enquiry, if they pick up on it, they may be even more likely to act.

Of course, if you abandoned the site name and wanted to play meaner you could monitor other boat-related sites for anyone breaking the rules (improper use of name/logo/phrases etc) and report them to the 2012 office.

This document seems to have the best info. Unfortunately, it seems lacking on how to deal with anyone offering a service that is directly related to the events taking place - eg someone could offer a direct taxi service from Heathrow to Stratford which would be pointless any other time. As far as I could see, it doesn't cover this sort of situation so makes it hard to tell if it would be OK or not.

I think the easiest way to get an answer is to contact them asking how to become the official 'on-water' transport supplier for Weymouth. If you sound like you're waving pound notes around, you'll get to talk to someone!

Good luck.
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Old 05 October 2009, 10:42   #13
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Well surprised we were we had a lawyer from London2012 call and explain the branding issues. Basically they will not allow olympicribs.co.uk and have concerns about ribs4weymouth2012.co.uk but they can allow the other one of ribs4 weymouth providing we dont use the site soley to sell product relating to the olympics but we can use any site to do what we do and add the olympics as a venue coming up. There main concern is that it would appear we were a supplier to the olympics and will not allow this unless they have granted the order to a company.

Cant remember who said it but they did want us to hand over the domain names which had 2012 attached, but they dont pay so we will retain them until they expire , clearly closer to the time if we achieved an order we could again use it so not going to give that away yet.

Cheers for help
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Old 05 October 2009, 12:36   #14
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I don't know whether or not using olympicribs.co.uk or ribs4weymouth2012.co.uk actually violates any intellectual rights, but you can be sure that the London2012 lawyers will talk very confidently about their opinions. They tend to do that, but it doesn't necessarily mean that they are right in every case.

If you do use any of these names and you come under pressure to stop, I would simply direct the complainant to the Nominet Dispute Resolution Service which exists purely for this reason.
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Old 05 October 2009, 14:53   #15
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I don't know whether or not using olympicribs.co.uk or ribs4weymouth2012.co.uk actually violates any intellectual rights, but you can be sure that the London2012 lawyers will talk very confidently about their opinions. They tend to do that, but it doesn't necessarily mean that they are right in every case.


I was a little bored so read the 2 Acts referred to on the site...

the relevant part is (as ammended)
Quote:
(1) A person infringes the Olympics association right if in the course of trade he uses—
(a) a representation of the Olympic symbol, the Olympic motto or a protected word, or
(b) a representation of something so similar to the Olympic symbol or the Olympic motto as to be likely to create in the public mind an association with it, or a word so similar to a protected word as to be likely to create in the public mind an association with the Olympic Games or the Olympic movement”.

the protected words are:
Quote:

(i) Olympiad,
(ii) Olympiads,
(iii) Olympian,
(iv) Olympians,
(v) Olympic, and
(vi) Olympics, and
(b) each of the following is a protected word in relation to the Paralympics association right—
(i) Paralympiad,
(ii) Paralympiads,
(iii) Paralympian,
(iv) Paralympians,
(v) Paralympic, and
(vi) Paralympics.”

No mention of London2012, 2012, or Weymouth2012 in there at all! I could see the argument that "London 2012" is likely to create in the public mind an association with the Olympic Games or the Olympic movement - but Weymouth 2012 ??



The 2012 logo has been registerred as a trademark, and the words "London 2012" have also been successfully registerred - but the phrase in words or numbers 2012/twenty-twelve have been refused a TM application. Whilst I guess they can still claim unregisterred rights - its just crazy to claim that they have restrictions over a whole year.



I certainly can't see anything in either Act to prevent you form setting up a business ancillary to the Games, only providing goods or services during the games etc. Indeed the whole "political" reason for the games is ecconomic gain - i.e. UK plc should want you to do this. I think the lawyers are overstepping the mark by telling you "providing we dont use the site soley to sell product relating to the olympics". I would however put a reasonably prominent statement somewhere on the site that you are not an official supplier to the games.


Quote:
If you do use any of these names and you come under pressure to stop, I would simply direct the complainant to the Nominet Dispute Resolution Service which exists purely for this reason.
and when you do remind them of s16 of the 1995 Act which gives you rights of recourse if their claims are "groundless".
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Old 05 October 2009, 15:05   #16
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(b) a representation of something so similar to the Olympic symbol or the Olympic motto as to be likely to create in the public mind an association with it, or a word so similar to a protected word as to be likely to create in the public mind an association with the Olympic Games or the Olympic movement”.

Cheers to your boredom:- The above section is the basic area this lawyer refered to although he agreed the word Weymouth was not and with 2012 would likely create the above association. I dont need them on my back and can still add all the links I need via present site but will keep developing Weymouth option and have a choice of 2012 if I go that way. I know that a legal arguement is not worth the costings as they have the government money and I have pocket money against them
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Old 21 October 2009, 14:52   #17
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update

The lawyers at London2012 are still trying to make a decision. I spoke to them again and they "prefer" me not to use Weymouth2012 as an option but accept that they may not be able to stop me except through association rules which they are to discuss with their team of lawyers and then write and tell me their thoughts/arguements.

They again asked me to hand over olympicribs.co.uk but when I asked for payment they laughed so I laughed back and said no thanks! They even asked if I would hand over weymouth2012 but agreed they probably at this stage did not have an arguement.

Watch this space they hope to e mail me their responses later this or next week.
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Old 28 October 2009, 06:28   #18
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latest updates ANY THOUGHTS OR OBSERVATIONS

THIS IS A SUMMARY OF THE LETTER FROM LONDON 2012

i) Use of the words Olympic/2012 in domain name

As discussed on the phone, we are concerned that your proposed use of the domain names www.olympicribs.co.uk, and www.ribs4weymouth2012.co.uk, along with the proposed content of your website, may allow you to benefit from an unauthorised association with the Games. A domain name with the words ‘Olympic’ or ‘2012’, used in conjunction with website content which creates an association with the Games, may infringe our rights. If we were to allow such use the rights we can offer to our sponsors and licensees would be undermined. For the reasons set out above, we would therefore ask that you use your proposed alternative domain of www.ribs4weymouth.co.uk.

(ii) Website content

Certain factual statements about the Games are permitted, provided they do not create an association between a business and the Games. You may of course promote the services you intend to offer in the year 2012, provided they are necessary, proportionate, and do not suggest or imply that c2ribs has any association with the Games. You cannot promote or market your business in connection to the Games. I mentioned that we have guidelines on what references to London 2012 are permitted, and would recommend that you read our “Brand Protection – What you need to know, Information for Businesses” booklet which can be downloaded from our website listed above.
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