Posts Tagged ‘2012’

This week saw the insanity of the olympics reach new proportions as the organising committee (LOCOG) got Space Hijackers removed from twitter. A peaceful bunch of protestors who seek to maintain public spaces for public uses. Who in their own words seek to

“battle the constant oppressive encroachment onto public spaces of institutions, corporations and urban planners. We oppose the way that public space is being eroded and replaced by corporate profit making space.”

Not a notorious terrorist organisation – their crime? spoofing the olympic symbols.

Note, that is a crime they stand accused of, not copyright infringement as such. Such is the Orwellian reach of this vanity project the political classess have made it criminal to encroach on their ability to profit from these games. Any undue advertising, protesting or anti games sentiment is not permitted. It has been made criminal with officials having the right to enter property and seize anything they deem not in accordance with the games legislation.

It is for instance now an offence to use branded phrases such as

The word ‘London 2012’
The words ‘Olympic’, ‘Olympiad’, ‘Olympian’ (and their plurals and words very similar to them – eg ‘Olympix’
The words ‘Paralympic’, ‘Paralympiad’, ‘Paralympian’ and their plurals and words very similar to them – eg ‘Paralympix’

The legislation goes wider, you may not use specific words in conjunction as described

For the purpose of considering whether a person has infringed the London Olympics association right a court may, in particular, take account of his use of a combination of expressions of a kind specified in sub-paragraph (2).
(2)The combinations referred to in sub-paragraph (1) are combinations of—

(a)any of the expressions in the first group, with

(b)any of the expressions in the second group or any of the other expressions in the first group.

(3)The following expressions form the first group for the purposes of sub-paragraph (2)—

(a)“games”,

(b)“Two Thousand and Twelve”,

(c)“2012”, and

(d)“twenty twelve”.

(4)The following expressions form the second group for the purposes of sub-paragraph (2)—

(a)gold,

(b)silver,

(c)bronze,

(d)London,

(e)medals,

(f)sponsor, and

(g)summer.

So not only have they effectively trademarked the year 2012, you are committing an offence if your advertising has the words London 2012 on it.

So what of the legacy? Surely that is the real payoff from all the disruption and cost?

So lets take a sport dear to me – shooting. The promises of lasting venues is a sham. Rather than use the money to invest and improve in a lasting venue there is a purpose built one to be torn down after the games. The government have been forced to enact temporary law to allow pistol shooting, but permits only cover the athletes and then only for the games. So the British Olympic team will again be forced to train outside of the UK. Although it is amazing there are any as the funding for the pistol shooters was removed whilst rifle and shotgun continue to be promoted.

So despite the private roads for the profiteers and politicians, denied to ambulances, why should you care? Well how about on cost?

The olympics were supposed to cost £2.4bn when bid for. Latest estimates concede that has risen to around £24bn (and that’s official accounting, I dread to think what is hidden). That’s £400 for every person in the UK, or about 2 and half grand for an average family. For 2 weeks glorified egg and spoon with associated hangers on. That’s 10 brand new hospitals right there.

The spirit of the games is dead. It was trampled to death in the rush of the great and the good to profit in both cash and vanity. It died of a heart attack feasting on the official food of the games, McDonalds, it lost its teeth to the offical drink Coca Cola and the official chocolate Cadburys, it went blind from Dow Chemicals in Bhopal,

I actually quite like the Olympics themselves, I like watching the obscure stuff, it’s usually hilarious. But I’m inclined to agree with the spacehijackers

We’re not opposed to the sports events, and we’re all in favour of having a big party – but only if everyone’s invited.

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