Philippine Olympic Committee cautions brands vs use of Olympic rings, logos

August 5, 2021 - 7:26 PM
Olympic rings
Security personnel stand guard near the Olympic rings monument during a rally by anti-Olympics protesters outside the Japanese Olympic Committee headquarters, in Tokyo, Japan May 18, 2021. (Reuters/Issei Kato/File Photo/File Photo)

The Philippine Olympic Committee reminded private companies on Thursday about the use of logos, emblems and other properties of the Olympics.

Philippine Olympic Committee's post
Philippine Olympic Committee’s post about brands’ use of the Olympic logo.

Brands have previously sent well wishes and congratulatory messages to Hidilyn Diaz, Nesthy Petecio and other Filipino representatives during their victories in the Tokyo Olympics 2020.

READ: Moment marketing: How brands capitalize on Hidilyn Diaz’s Olympic feat

From international franchises to homegrown companies, different businesses got creative with their advertising materials.

Most of them used the Olympic rings, whereas others played around with some imageries such as a barbell and a medal, and clever slogans and puns.

According to the POC, not all icons or symbols related to the Olympic Games can be used for free despite being displayed to the public.

“To all corporate brands, we appreciate your support for the Olympics and for our Philippine athletes participating in the Games. However, please be advised that only recognized Olympic partners are authorized to use the brand properties and assets of the Olympics,” it said.

These properties and assets include:

  • Standalone Olympic rings
  • Tokyo Olympic logos
  • The POC logo and emblem

“Any authorized use of the IOC, Olympic, or POC assets will be subject to civil and/or criminal liability,” it said.

The POC is the parent organization of all national sports organizations in the Philippines. It is also the only committee or authority recognized by the International Olympic Committee in representing the country in the Olympic Games and other regional sports competitions.

Guidelines for the use of the properties and symbols mentioned are stated under Rule 40 of the IOC, which link of the copy was attached in POC’s social media post.

What the guidelines say

In the document titled “Commercial Opportunities for Athletes,” the term “Olympic Partners” applies to “all brands or companies with sponsorship or official merchandise licensing with the IOC, the Olympic Games Organizing Committee and National Olympic Committees (NOCs) and the official Olympic Games broadcasters.”

The names of these brands can be found on the official websites of POC and IOC.

The rest are considered “Non-Olympic Partners.”

Personal sponsors of athletes, meanwhile, who plan to use the athlete’s name and image must notify the IOC first of their advertising plans. The deadline was last May 15.

“With regard to social media advertising, personal sponsors do not need to provide advance notice for each individual post, but details of the sponsors’ social media advertising plan, including the nature and planned content of the posts, should be included in the sponsors’ online notification, which should be made available no later than 15 May 2021,” the guideline read.

They can also engage in congratulatory advertising given the following guidelines:

  • During the Olympic Games period

“Only Olympic Partners can engage in congratulatory advertising.”

  • Before and after the Olympic Games Period

“Non-Olympic Partners can engage in congratulatory advertising in support of their contracted athletes, but without using any Olympic Properties.”

POC recently announced that Filipino athletes who have not received an Olympic medal will still receive P500,000 each from them.

“Everyone on Team Philippines in these ‘Golden Olympics’ deserve all the praises, and in this case, incentives, they need. Qualifying for the Olympics is already that difficult, what more competing in the Games themselves,” POC president Bambol Tolentino said.