Advertisers launch protest over Olympics IP laws

The advertising industry has slammed the Government’s proposed 2012 London Olympics intellectual property laws “draconian, flawed and unwarranted”.

Marina Palomba, legal director at the Institue of Practitioners in Advertising (IPA), has written to Department of Culture Media & Sport minister Richard Caborn to lobby for the legislation to be scrapped.

Palomba said the laws, due to come into effect next Spring, would introduce a “very restrictive IP right to protect official sponsors”.

“The law also reverses the standard presumption of innocence under English law by presuming advertisers guilty unless and until they can demonstrate they are not associating with the Games,” she said.

Palomba argues the laws would prohibit advertisers from using words like ‘summer’, ‘bronze’ and ‘2012’ in certain combinations. According to the IPA, organising committees for the Turin and Vancouver winter and Beijing summer games had met or exceeded marketing revenue targets without introducing similar legislation.