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Community Institutions

The COC encourages community institutions and groups such as schools, libraries, community centres and clubs to share their support for the Canadian Olympic Team and our Olympic Athletes as well as generate excitement related to the Olympic Movement in Canada.

How can a community institution associate with the Canadian Olympic Team or Olympic Brand?

The following two examples demonstrate how a community institution might incorporate the use of the Olympic Brand in its operations with the intent of generating excitement for the Olympic Movement. The examples identify situations where use of the Olympic Brand would be permitted as well as a contrasting example displaying engagement in a manner that is likely to infringe upon the rights of COC sponsors. The examples also outline the assessment tool that is relied upon to determine the likelihood of an infringement.

Requests for use of the Olympic Brand and/or related questions should be submitted to the COC at branduse@olympic.ca.

Example: Community Institution Engagement

A public library wants to create an Olympic Games book display using the Olympic rings.

Case Assessment
Because the use is for educational purposes and is non-commercial in nature, this would be considered as unlikely to infringe.

Example: Community Festival 

You are a community leader organizing a winter festival where part of the event will include an “Olympic Hockey Challenge” sponsored by XYZ Company.

Case Assessment
In this case, because the proposed use of the brand and the event itself is being sponsored by a commercial organization that is not a COC sponsor, this would be considered as likely to infringe.

Example: Painting Exhibit

An artist uses the Olympic Rings in a piece of artwork titled “Olympic Spirit”, which has not been produced on a commercial scale.

Case Assessment
Despite the prominent featuring of the Olympic Brand, an individual piece of artistic work that is not produced on a commercial scale is of low concern to the COC. This would be considered as unlikely to create an unauthorized commercial association with the Olympic Brand and therefore unlikely to infringe.

Example: Sponsored Painting Exhibit

A local artist creates an Olympic Games-themed painting exhibit titled “Olympic Spirit” sponsored by XYZ Company.

Case Assessment
Despite the initiative being artistic in nature, because it prominently features the Olympic Brand and is endorsed by a commercial organization that does not have the right to associate with the Olympic Brand, this would be considered as likely to create an unauthorized commercial association with the Olympic Brand and thereby likely to infringe.

Note: The Brand Use Guidelines support individuals featuring the Olympic Brand in personal artistic and/or editorial works for non-commercial use. However, some non-commercial uses may be subject to written approval by the COC and/or the IOC. In all cases, should you be unclear on permissible non-commercial use of the Olympic Brand we encourage you to send your requests to branduse@olympic.ca

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