IOC Social and Digital Media Guidelines

IOC Social and Digital Media Guidelines for persons accredited to the XXIII Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018

 

Introduction

The International Olympic Committee (the “IOC”) encourages accredited persons at the XXIII Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 (the “Games”) to share their experiences with their friends, family and supporters via social and digital media. These guidelines (the “Guidelines”) are designed to ensure that these activities respect the Olympic values and the rights of others.

These Guidelines apply to all accredited persons at the Games, including all athletes, coaches, officials, personnel of National Olympic Committees and of International Federations and members of accredited media. They apply from the opening of the Olympic Villages, on 1 February 2018, until the closing of the Olympic Villages, on 28 February 2018.

In addition to these Guidelines, accredited persons may be subject to additional Guidelines related to the use of social and digital media, issued by their National Olympic Committees or other respective organisations. Furthermore, the permissions and/or restrictions described in these Guidelines are subject to the specific terms of any particular accreditation (e.g. additional restrictions on the capture and use of content by holders of “E” accreditations in their accreditation terms) or where the accredited person is performing duties as a representative of an IOC rights-holder, their activity will be undertaken pursuant to the relevant rights agreement (e.g. accredited persons from RHBs capturing and/or distributing content for that RHB will do so pursuant to the terms of the relevant Media Rights Agreement).

Please also refer to the “Frequently Asked Questions” section for more detailed information on these Guidelines.

 

1. General Principles

a) Media capacity: Only persons accredited as media may act as journalists, reporters or in any other related media capacity while they are at the Games. Accredited persons who are not accredited media can give interviews to the media but are not allowed to report on the Games in any media capacity, including by acting on behalf of any media organisation.

b) Respect of laws and Olympic values: Postings made by, or on behalf of, accredited persons must comply with these Guidelines and conform to applicable laws and the Olympic values of excellence, respect and friendship. Postings must not be made for the purposes of demonstration or any form of political, religious or racial propaganda. They must be dignified and not be discriminatory, offensive, hateful or defamatory.

In particular, when using social and digital media, accredited persons must not:

i. intrude upon the privacy of others;

ii. infringe any intellectual property rights, or other rights of the IOC or any other person or organisation;

iii. disclose any confidential information or another person’s or organisation’s private information;

iv. interfere with the competitions or the ceremonies of the Games or with the responsibilities of the IOC, the PyeongChang 2018 Organising Committee or other entities that are part of the organisation of the Games; or

v. violate security measures for the safe conduct of the Games.

c) Responsibility: When accredited persons choose to go public with any comments, opinions or other content posted on social and digital media, they are solely responsible for the consequences of their action. Accredited persons may suffer legal or disciplinary sanctions or other negative consequences for any postings deemed to be inappropriate, illegal, or infringing on any other person’s rights (including the consequences referred to in Section 4 below). This also applies where accredited persons authorize another person or organisation to manage their social media accounts or to express opinions on their behalf.

d) Non-commercial use: During the period of application of these Guidelines, accredited persons must not:

(i) use social and digital media for any commercial, promotional or advertising purposes; or

(ii) sell or commercially distribute any still photographs, audio or video taken or recorded in Olympic venues,

in each case other than with the prior written approval of the IOC (or their National Olympic Committee, where applicable).

This means in particular that the monetisation or commercialisation (including any reference to any brand or commercial relationship in any post) of any social or digital media postings by accredited persons is prohibited. Furthermore, postings which create or imply any association between, on the one hand, an organisation and/or that organisation’s products and services and, on the other hand, the IOC, the Games or the Olympic Movement (for instance by use of the term “Olympic”, of the Olympic symbol, of the PyeongChang 2018 official emblem, mascot, look or any other Olympic properties as defined per the Olympic Charter)) are prohibited, unless permission has been obtained from the IOC and/or the relevant National Olympic Committee beforehand.

 

2. Still Photographs, Audio and Video

a) Still photographs: accredited persons are allowed to capture, with non-professional equipment, still photographs of the events, competitions or any other activities which occur at Olympic venues and to share such pictures on social and digital media for personal, non-commercial and non-promotional use. Still photographs can only be shared on accredited persons’ personal social and digital media accounts and they must not be made available on social and digital media accounts owned by, or promoting, any commercial organisation, without the IOC’s prior written approval.

b) Audio/video: accredited persons are allowed to capture, with non-professional equipment, audio/video, from the events competitions or any other activities which occur at Olympic venues.

Holders of “E” accreditations (including E, EP, EC, ET and ENRs) are specifically not allowed to share any audio/video content recorded within Olympic venues on social and digital media. Subject to the following conditions, accredited persons other than holders of “E” accreditations are allowed to share audio/video content captured within Olympic venues: i. Audio/video content captured in, or displaying, the “Field of Play” and “Back of House” areas (as defined below) must not be shared or distributed on social and digital media or on any other type of media without the IOC’s prior approval; and ii. other audio/video content captured by accredited persons in accordance with these Guidelines can only be shared or distributed on social and digital media

(i) for personal, non-commercial and non-promotional use; and

(ii) on accredited persons’ personal social and digital media accounts. Such content cannot be made available on social and digital media accounts owned by or promoting any commercial organisation, without the IOC’s prior written approval.

c) “Olympic venues” means all venues which require an Olympic accreditation card or ticket to gain entry, including the Olympic Village, Olympic Medals Plaza, the competition venues, the training and practice venues, the International Broadcast Centre and the Main Press Centre.

d) “Field of Play” means the area used for a sporting competition or ceremony plus the immediate surrounding areas, usually separated from the spectators by a clear boundary. The design and specifications of each differ from one sport to another. Also referred to as the slope, rink, sheet, track, court, field, piste, ring, etc.

e) “Back of House” means non-public areas, within and/or surrounding a venue, located after the accreditation point and generally those areas of the venue designed to support the operation. Typically located out of view of the public, access to the Back of House areas is restricted to those individuals with the appropriate accreditation. Back of House areas include Organising Committee operational areas; Athlete and Coach only areas; Host Broadcaster operational facilities and compounds; administration offices; etc. Back of House does not include spectators’ areas reserved for accredited persons or the Olympic Village.

 

3. Domain Names/URLs / Page Naming / Applications

Domain names, URLs and social media handles: the use of the word “Olympic” or “Olympics” or other Olympic-related terms (including their equivalents in other languages) in domain names, URLs and social media handles is not allowed unless approved by the IOC beforehand. For example, www.[myname]olympic.com or @[myname]Olympic would not be permitted. Similarly, accredited persons may not create stand-alone Olympic-themed websites, applications or any other features to host coverage of the Games.

Web pages: A page of a larger website including the term Olympic, such as www.[myname].com/olympic would be allowed, provided the content made available through such page respects the requirements included in these Guidelines.

 

4. Infringements

In cases of infringement of these Guidelines, the IOC may require the concerned persons or organisations to remove any infringing content, or, depending on the circumstances, may take further measures such as withdrawing the accreditation of the relevant person or organisation, taking legal action or imposing other sanctions pursuant to the Olympic Charter.

 

5. Miscellaneous

Amendment: The IOC may amend these Guidelines, as it deems appropriate.

Final authority: The IOC Executive Board shall be the final authority with respect to the interpretation and implementation of these Guidelines.

Language: In case of any discrepancy between the different language versions of these Guidelines, the text of the English version will prevail.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

These FAQ are provided by the IOC for information purposes only. Accredited persons at the Games of the XXIII Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 (the “Games”) should consult the full version of the IOC Social and Digital Media Guidelines (the “Guidelines”) available at this link.

Q: Who is concerned by the Guidelines?
A: The Guidelines apply to all accredited persons, in particular to all athletes, coaches, officials, personnel of National Olympic Committees and of International Federations and members of media accredited to the Games. However, some of the permissions in the Guidelines do not apply to all accredited persons (for example, holders of “E” accreditations (including E, EP, EC, ET and ENRs) are not allowed to share any audio/video content recorded within Olympic venues on social and digital media). Furthermore, the permissions and/or restrictions described in the Guidelines are subject to the specific terms of any particular accreditation (e.g. additional restrictions on the capture and use of content by holders of “E” accreditations in their accreditation terms) or where the accredited person is performing duties as a representative of an IOC rights-holder, their activity will be undertaken pursuant to the relevant rights agreement (e.g. accredited persons from RHBs capturing and/or distributing content for that RHB will do so pursuant to the terms of the relevant Media Rights Agreement).

Q: When do the Guidelines apply?
A: The Guidelines apply from the opening of the Olympic Village, on 1 February 2018, until the closing of the Olympic Village, on 28 February 2018.

Q: Can I use social media or update my blog/website during my participation in the Games?
A: YES; the IOC encourages all accredited persons to share their experience at the Games with others through internet or any social and digital media (e.g. via services such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Weibo, VKontakte, etc.) but requests that certain rules are observed.
In particular, this activity should comply with the Guidelines, the Olympic Charter and be consistent with the Olympic values of excellence, respect and friendship. Also remember that any online activity is still subject to applicable laws (such as defamation, privacy and intellectual property laws) and so the Guidelines require accredited persons to respect those laws and ensure that their social and digital media activity is in good taste, dignified and does not contain vulgar or obscene content. Postings that are racist, discriminatory or otherwise offensive towards other persons are also prohibited.
During the period of the Games, accredited persons are not allowed to commercialise their social and digital media and internet activities (see further below “Can I post about my sponsors during the Games?”) or to post or share certain types of video (see further below “Can I share videos taken from within Olympic venues?”).

Q: Can I post about the competitions?
A: YES; accredited persons can post about their participation or involvement in competitions, or their experiences generally during the Games but, unless they are members of accredited media, they should not assume the role of a journalist or media outlet. Posting should hence be in a first-person, diary-type format. In their online activities, accredited persons must not disclose any information which is confidential or private in relation to any other person or organisation involved in the Games.

Q: Can I answer questions from the media asked through internet or social media?
A: YES; in the same way as offline, accredited persons are allowed - but under no obligation - to answer questions from the media asked through internet or social and digital media. They should also be vigilant about their postings and keep in mind that what they say and post on the internet and social and digital media will be in the public domain and may be used by the media. In essence, accredited persons post their opinions and any other materials at their own risk and responsibility, and they should make it clear that the views expressed are their own, even if they have authorized another person or organisation to manage their social media account on their behalf.

Q: Can I share photos taken from Olympic venues?
A: YES; accredited persons can share still photographs taken within or outside competition venues and other Olympic venues on social and digital media and internet provided such postings are not used for commercial purposes, are shared on accredited person’s personal social media account and respect applicable laws and the rights of others.

Q: Can I record or create videos taken from within Olympic venues?
A: Accredited persons can record video or audio content, within or outside competition venues and other Olympic venues, with non-professional recording material (for example, no TV equipment, tripods or monopods are allowed). However, video or audio and live content taken from within Olympic venues (i.e. all venues which require an Olympic accreditation card or ticket to gain entry, including the Olympic Village, Olympic Medals Plaza, the competition venues, the training and practice venues, the International Broadcast Centre (IBC) and the Main Press Centre (MPC)) must only be for personal, non-commercial and non- promotional purpose.

Q: Can I share videos taken from within Olympic venues?
A: Accredited persons CANNOT post, share any audio/video captured in, or showing, the “Field of Play” (i.e. the area used for a sporting competition or ceremony plus the immediate surrounding areas, usually separated from the spectators by a clear boundary) or “Back of House” (i.e. non-public areas, within and/or surrounding a venue located after the accreditation point and generally those areas of the venue designed to support the operation). For other content (whether audio, video or live streamed content) taken within competition venues and other Olympic venues which is not “Field of Play” or “Back of House” content, accredited persons (EXCLUDING accredited media with “E” accreditations (including E, EP, EC, ET and ENRs categories)) can post or share that content. This can only be done on the accredited person’s personal accounts, for non-commercial purposes and cannot be used to generate financial value (e.g. through pre-roll advertising).

Examples:
A video or live stream filmed by an athlete featuring other athletes sitting in the spectator area of a competition venue with the crowd in the background – PERMITTED FOR SHARING

A video or live stream filmed by an athlete featuring other athletes sitting in the spectator area of a competition venue with the “Field of Play” (or ceremony performance) in the background – NOT PERMITTED FOR SHARING

A video or live stream of the competition filmed by an athlete sitting in the spectator area of a competition venue – NOT PERMITTED FOR SHARING

A video or live stream filmed by an athlete from within or showing the athlete marshalling area of a competition venue – NOT PERMITTED FOR SHARING

Q: Can I post photos or videos taken within the Olympic Village?
A: Accredited persons can take photos within the Olympic Village and such photos can be shared on the internet or social and digital media. However, it is important to keep in mind that if another person’s image is included or referred to in a posting such person’s permission should be obtained beforehand. Persons staying in the Olympic Village are also required to respect the protected atmosphere of the Olympic Village and are not allowed to report on the activities of other residents, unless they have obtained such other persons’ consent beforehand.
Accredited persons can also record videos or audio or live stream content in the Olympic Village and share such photos or videos on social and digital media for personal, non-commercial and non-promotional use

Q: Can I post about my sponsors during the Games?
A: As a principle, accredited persons should only use social and digital media during the period of the Games for the purposes of sharing their experiences and communicating with their friends, family and supporters and not for commercial and/or advertising purposes. Unless they have obtained the prior express written approval of the IOC (or their National Olympic Committee, where applicable) to do so, accredited persons may not post about their sponsors, promote any organisation and/or an organisation’s products or services on social or digital media or otherwise use social and digital media in a manner that creates or implies any association between the Games or the IOC and an organisation and/or an organisation’s products and services.
All competitors, coaches, trainers and officials must ensure that their activities on the internet and social and digital media comply with the requirements of Rule 40 of the Olympic Charter and the related instructions issued by the IOC, PyeongChang 2018 Organising Committee and their respective National Olympic Committees. The Rule 40 Guidelines issued by the IOC contain limited exceptions to permit advertising by Olympic sponsors or, in certain circumstances, by other sponsors running existing campaigns.

Q: Can I use the Olympic symbol or other Olympic properties in my internet and social media posts?
A: YES, provided the Olympic Symbol or other Olympic properties (including in particular all Olympic emblems, mascots, flags, torches, mottos, etc) are not used for commercial purposes, to promote any organisation and/or an organisation’s products or services, or in a manner that suggests any association between the Olympic Games or the IOC and an organisation and/or its products and services, or any kind of endorsement by the IOC or the PyeongChang 2018 Organising Committee. The integrity of the Olympic symbol and other Olympic properties should be maintained and the Olympic symbol and other Olympic properties should not be distorted, altered or used in a context that has no relevance for the Games. Further guidance about the permitted use of Olympic properties by media organisations (i.e. written press, photographers, non-rights-holding broadcasters, and any other rights holding media, whether accredited and non-accredited) is included in the IOC’s “Guidelines for Editorial Use of the Olympic Properties by Media Organisations”.

Q: I am receiving unwanted attention online, how can I protect myself?
A: For information related to protecting yourself from online harassment and abuse, visit the Olympic Athletes’ Hub, Safe Sport Section. If you have any other concerns related to harassment and abuse during Games Time you can also contact the designated IOC Safeguarding Officer, or visit the IOC Safeguarding Office, situated in the polyclinic of the Olympic Village.

 

IOC SOCIAL AND DIGITAL MEDIA GUIDELINES - PYEONGCHANG 2018 (PDF)

FAQ IOC SOCIAL AND DIGITAL GUIDELINES - PYEONGCHANG 2018 (PDF)