Focusing on the Olympic Games, this report will look at the intellectual property-related issues and challenges inherent in hosting a world-class sporting event. Hosting the Olympic Games presents a unique opportunity and challenge for any host country; indeed the International Olympic Committee (IOC) maintains that the Games represent the most effective international corporate marketing platform in the world. It is incumbent upon a National Olympic Committee (NOC) to comply with a stringent set of goals and rules in order to successfully host the Olympic Games. The NOC performs a wide array of functions, ranging from ensuring that political demonstrations are not held in the host city to organizing medical services. With regard to intellectual property (IP), the NOC also manages domestic sponsorship, ticketing and licensing programs within the host country under the direction of the IOC. This report will highlight some IP-specific challenges and successes that host countries have experienced while hosting the Olympic Games, will look at the efforts some future host countries are making and will suggest some practical tips for IP enforcement.
Photo © Marcus Lindström 06