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US Olympic Committee Reportedly Restricting Use of Certain Hashtags During Games

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The Olympic Village is decrepit, the hospitals are a mess, and the police are engaging in protests (and possibly kidnappings). There’s also a massive doping scandal to sort through, and oh yeah, the Zika virus. Suffice it to say that people connected with the Olympics still have a lot of work to do to prepare for the Games, which start next week.

But there is one thing that some Olympic officials are TOTALLY on top of — protecting their sponsors.

The United States Olympic Committee is warning companies who sponsor individual athletes but do not sponsor the USOC or the International Olympic Committee that they are prohibited from sending out certain Twitter hashtags, and other intellectual property, on their corporate accounts.

According to a letter obtained by ESPN from USOC chief marketing office Lisa Baird, companies who are not sponsors of the IOC or USC are not permitted to tweet about the Olympics.

“Commercial entities may not post about the Trials or Games on their corporate social media accounts,” Baird wrote in the letter. “This restriction includes the use of USOC’s trademarks in hashtags such as #Rio2016 or #TeamUSA.”

The ESPN report also says that any entity “whose primary mission is not media-related” is prohibited from tweeting out results.

It will be worth monitoring if companies like Waste Management fire off any tweets during the sailing competition.

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