Olympians get permission to tweet away in 2012

Posted by David Gomez

In 2012, athletes at the London Olympics will be able to blog and comment on Twitter. They just better not do it for money.

According to Reuters, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) gave the go ahead for social media this past Monday.
    
The athletes better not get too drunk and frisky during their stay in Olympic Village, though. Anyone who gets caught posting x-rated content (homemade or otherwise) could be kicked out of the games.  

The Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) released guidelines on Monday that said the IOC "actively encourages and supports athletes ... to take part in 'social media' and to post, blog and tweet their experiences."

However, the elite physical specimen bloggers and tweeters must restrict themselves to "first-person, diary-type formats," not report on events like journalists and they must ensure their posts do not have "vulgar or obscene words or images."

Many athletes blogged during the last Olympics in Beijing in 2008, but Twitter was still pretty new then. During those games the uploading of videos was banned and pictures were restricted to prevent copyright infringements.

Photographs taken at venues were banned in Beijing, but now they may now be uploaded to social media sites. They cannot be not sold or "otherwise" distributed though.

The posting of video and audio taken inside the venues and the Olympic is still banned but athletes may post videos taken outside the venues. We don’t want to upset NBC/Comcast by sharing special Olympic moments via social media now do we?

The IOC gets most of its cash from the selling television and online media rights so therefore they are highly protective of their intellectual property.

Social media activity conducted by the competitors must follow the Olympic Charter, which doesn’t allow political demonstrations. This is not as big of a concern in London as it was in Beijing.

People who are considered to be in violation of the guidelines could have their Olympic accreditation removed. This basically means that they would be banned from the games.

There will be no amateur social media porn at the 2012 Olympics, only competition. However, if the athletes sneak some English porn mags into their rooms, there will be nothing the IOC can do.