openDemocracyUK

Olympic organisers shut down ‘Space Hijackers’ protest twitter account

Index on Censorship has learned that the Twitter account of protest group Space Hijackers has been suspended following a complaint by the organisers of the London Olympics.

by Padraig
24 May 2012

This piece is part of our debate 'The Great British Summer?'.

Index on Censorship has learned that the Twitter account of protest group Space Hijackers has been suspended following a complaint by the organisers of the London Olympics.

The anti-capitalists, who have styled themselves as the Official Protesters of the London 2012 Olympic Games, received notification from Twitter in an email, which stated:

Hello,

We have received reports from the trademark holder, London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games Ltd, that your account, @spacehijackers, is using a trademark in a way that could be confusing or misleading with regard to a brand affiliation. Your account has been temporarily suspended due to violation of our trademark policy.

(The full email is here.)

The Space Hijackers had been using an altered version of the 2012 logo on their site and their Twitter page

The Olympic organisers are notoriously prickly about branding, but also about protest, and laws introduced after London won the right to host this year’s games could potentially place restrictions on protest for the duration of the Olympics and Paralympics.

It could be argued that the logo in itself was a justifiable reason for the suspension, but you have to seriously ask: is anyone actually going to confuse the Space Hijackers account for an official Olympic account? This should surely be the basis of a claim for trademark infringement.

It is doubtful that Space Hijackers are actually going to bring down the International Olympic Committee and capitalism along with it (not through Twitter at least). One can only conclude that this is an act of petty, vindictive censorship, hardly in the spirit of plurality and inclusiveness the Olympics is supposed to promote.

 


This piece was first published by Index on Censorship who are running a free event, "Is Sport Above Human Rights?" on Tuesday 19 June. Details here.

 

 

US election: what's going on in Trump's must-win states?

Our editor-in-chief, Mary Fitzgerald, is on the ground in key US battleground states – follow her on Twitter @maryftz for live updates.

There's never been more at stake. But the pandemic has kept many foreign journalists away. Hundreds of international observers who normally oversee US elections aren't there.

Can we trust the polls? What's the blanket media coverage not telling us? Hear Mary describe what she's seeing and hearing across the country, from regular citizens to social justice activists to right-wing militias arming themselves for election day.

Plus: get the inside scoop openDemocracy's big 'follow-the-money' investigation – breaking soon – which lifts the lid on how Trump-linked groups are going global with their culture wars.

Join us for a free live discussion on Thursday 29 October, 5pm UK time/1pm EDT.

Who is bankrolling Britain's democracy? Which groups shape the stories we see in the press; which voices are silenced, and why? Sign up here to find out.

Comments

We encourage anyone to comment, please consult the oD commenting guidelines if you have any questions.
Audio available Bookmark Check Language Close Comments Download Facebook Link Email Newsletter Newsletter Play Print Share Twitter Youtube Search Instagram WhatsApp yourData