Over this week we were flooded with news of brands riding the wave of Joseph Schooling's success. Major brands such as Changi, to SIA and even smaller local players such Carousell put up social media posts congratulating Schooling.
However, according to a report by The New Paper, the Singapore National Olympic Council (SNOC) was soon after contacted by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to bring up the issue of Rule 40 surrounding Schooling’s victory.
According to the official document by the IOC, seen by Marketing, Rule 40 applies during the Olympic Games period from 27 July until 24 August 2016- nine days prior to the opening ceremony until three days after the closing ceremony of the Rio games. The rule also states that except as permitted by the IOC executive board, no competitor, coach, trainer or official who participates in the Olympic Games may allow his person, name, picture or sports performances to be used for advertising purposes during the Olympic Games.
Moreover, when it comes to referring to the performance of an athlete, in this case, Schooling, only official Olympic sponsors are allowed to use terms related to the Olympics. The use of certain terms related to the Olympics alongside the participant’s name or image is not permitted, whether it is an existing campaign or not.
“Any use of other Olympic-related terms in such a way as to imply an association with the Olympic Games, depending upon context, is not permitted,” the document added. This includes terms such as “gold”, “victory” or “medal”. However, as seen locally, several celebratory posts which started flooding social media earlier last week saw these terms used.
When contacted by TNP, an SNOC spokesman reiterated that brands need to be mindful and adhere to the rules and guidelines which protect the Rio Games, its assets and its marks. The SNOC spokesperson added that SNOC would like to advise commercial entities to comply with the rules and not violate or exploit the assets for commercial gain.
Marketing has reached out to the SNOC for further clarification.
Some of the current official Olympic sponsors include Coca-Cola, P&G, McDonald’s, Panasonic, Samsung and Visa, to name a few. Meanwhile, some official sponsors of the Rio 2016 Olympics include Nissan, Net, Bradesco and more.
Meanwhile, while the nation remained united on the shared success, netizens were divided when it came to the stunts pulled by brands, with comments following suit calling them out for being opportunistic. (Read also: Should SIA have deleted the badly taken photos with Joseph Schooling?)
In a follow up article by Marketing, industry players were also quick to warn how quick consumers are to recognise brands which are there for the right reasons and not just abusing Schooling’s name for quick commercial gain.
Globally as well Singaporean Olympic gold-medallist, Joseph Schooling has captured the attention of more than just Olympic fans all over the world. Research company Meltwater has broken down the key countries with the most mentions of #Schooling #JosephSchooling.
The Top 3 Countries Outside of Singapore includes:
- United States of America: 23.202k mentions
- Malaysia: 3.285k mentions
- United Kingdom: 3.147k mentions
The top source for online conversation on Joseph Schooling came from Twitter, said the study:
- Twitter: 133.503k mentions. (94.68% of total online conversation)
- Facebook: 2.948k (2.09% of total online conversation)
- Forums: 2.685k (1.90% of total online conversation)