Friday, July 20, 2012

London 2012 Social Media regulations

 IOC to Go Easy on Fans Who Share Olympic Video
July 19, 2012
Social media users who take video of Olympic events and share it with their friends, even on public profiles, will not incur the wrath of the International Olympic Committee, a senior IOC official confirmed Wednesday.

Mark Adams, communications director for the IOC, said the guidelines were about preventing commercial companies from exploiting the Olympics for their own benefit, not about keeping ordinary fans from sharing clips with friends.

Speaking at the launch of the IOC’s social media strategy in the Olympic Village late Wednesday, Mr. Adams said that while there were no restrictions on spectators sharing photos, they were asked not to post videos on social media sites. But he acknowledged that the IOC would not enforce the rule except in the most egregious cases.
“Auntie Mabel in Norwich is not going to get a knock on the door at midnight and told to take something down,” he said. “The main reason we do this is to stop companies making money out of the Olympics who don’t put any money back into the sport.”
He confirmed that athletes would be restricted in their use of social media. For example, they won’t be allowed to promote commercial products from non-Olympic sponsors, but he said this was simply an extention of the existing IOC guidelines into the realm of social media.
Mr. Adams was speaking at the unveiling of the Olympic social media strategy, a broad plan to use the full gamut of social media platforms — from Twitter (@olympics) and Facebook, through Foursquare, Tumblr and Instagram.
While there was no official social media strategy during Beijing Olympics in 2008, Mr. Adams said the Vancouver Games allowed the IOC to take “baby steps.” He described the London Olympics as the first one to make full use of social media.
At the heart of the Olympic strategy is an aggregation tool bringing together the Twitter and Facebook feeds of Olympians, sports bodies and national organizations into a single portal — the Olympic Hub (, which is searchable by athlete, team, sport, discipline, and event.
In the light of the controversy surrounding Twitter posts by some sports competitors, Mr. Adams said the feeds available through the Olympic Hub would be post-moderated, although the individual accounts of the athletes themselves were not controlled.
In a patchy Skype interview with South Africa’s Oscar Pistorious, the 400-meter runner admitted to being an active Twitter user and said he personally runs his own account. His Facebook page is updated by his management team. He said he hadn’t yet read the IOC’s guidelines for competitors, which prohibits Olympians from using social media to promote brands that were not Olympic sponsors.
There are currently some 2,000 Olympians using the service, according to IOC social media chief Alex Hout. He predicted the figure would rise to 5,000 during the Games.
As well as aggregating feeds, the hub will host Facebook quizzes, Twitter conversations and a daily photographic competition. The feeds will be available via an Olympic Tumblr account (, one of four set up for the London Games. The sites today are sparsely populated.
The IOC struck a deal with Getty Images to allow selected images to be shared on a special Tumblr site ( These images would be available for all fans to circulate and share for personal (not commercial) use, although Mr. Hout stressed that copyright remained with the contents’ owners.
Other Tumblr sites include one dedicated to Olympic fashion (, as well one called “Faces of Olympians” (, an Instagram feed based on its campaign aimed at showing the human side of the games.
The IOC’s Foursquare campaign ( is a sort of modern-day treasure hunt. Users of the location-based service that check into certain Olympic venues will be able to unlock badges and be entered for a draw to win two tickets to an event the following day.
Finally, the IOC will use Google’s social network, Google+. Mr. Hout said the content shared via Google+ would have more of a technology edge, reflecting the social network’s more “geeky” image.
See the full social-media guidelines for Olympic participants (PDF)

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