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2020 Tokyo Olympics Will Ban Fans from Posting Videos on Social Media

26 Jun, 2019

By: Michael Popke

Spectators at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo will need prior permission from the International Olympic Committee to post “videos and sounds taken or recorded at the venue” on social media.

Seriously. That’s what the fine print says in the ticket purchase terms and conditions.

As Yahoo! reported on June 3, “fans are allowed to record videos. They just can’t share them on platforms like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram” without the IOC’s consent — which seems like a nearly impossible ask.

It’s worth noting that photographs do not fall under the IOC’s policy. As Yahoo! points out, the new policy appears to “prioritize[e] intellectual property rights over the potential upside of social media exposure” and “that could limit the Games’ exposure to potential new fans.”

SoraNews24.com, an English-language news site in Japan, speculated that the IOC is attempting to stifle amateur streamers.

“Sure, it’s understandable that the Olympics’ organizers don’t want people live-streaming entire competition from the stands, but a few seconds of video posted on social media after the contest has been decided, taken from a spectator seat, doesn’t seem likely to turn people away from the official broadcasts from professional media organizations who paid for those rights and want to protect their investments,” the site stated.

Another big question is how strictly the IOC will enforce its policy. Here’s Yahoo!’s take: “That dilemma may point to a wink/nod agreement between fans and the Games that sees organizers reserve the right take on social media posts they don’t see as beneficial. Despite the policy, fans are likely to post videos from Tokyo 2020 events on their social media platforms without gaining prior permission from the IOC. Here’s guessing that if said fans don’t give the IOC motivation to enforce its policy, they won’t face any blowback.”

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