Wednesday, August 18, 2004

In the true spirit of the games

Like everything else, the olympic games have fallen prey to the dual scourge of lawyers and corporate greed. To see the lunacy that lawyers can goad otherwise sane people into, check out the idiotic hyperlink policy page of the Athens 2004 site. The policy kindly informs me that "by introducing a link to the ATHENS 2004 official Website on your site" (as I have just done) "you are agreeing to comply with the ATHENS 2004 Website General Terms and Conditions". Well no, actually I don't. Not at all. So sue me. The General Terms and Conditions (note those imposing caps) state that I may "use the term ATHENS 2004 only, and no other term as the text referent". So if I link like this: Stupid, lawyer-befuddled olympics site I'm in violation. Also, I'm supposed to send a request letter to their Internet Department asking for permission to link to them, including goofy info such as "reason for linking" and "publishing period". This sort of thing happens because most corporate lawyers thrive on further stoking up the paranoid tendencies already inherent in most corporations, and because they know from experience that bullying language, no matter how devoid of any basis in law, will scare most people into submission.

Item 2 for today's "true spirit of the games" rant is the warning that the organizers have issued to spectators that they may be refused admission if they carry food or drink from companies that did not sponsor the games. So it has to be Coke - no Pepsi. And if you pitch up in a t-shirt carrying a non-sponsor's logo you can be made to wear it inside out.

All of this to "protect" those poor sponsors...


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