Olympics sponsor Samsung is reportedly giving free Galaxy Note 3 smartphones to athletes at this year’s Winter Olympics in Sochi. However, they come with a bit of a catch: Samsung is requiring the athletes to cover up the Apple logo if they use their iPhones to record the opening ceremonies of the event.
Details of the clamp-down, which is said to require the Apple logo on an iPhone be physically covered so that it’s not caught on camera during the televised ceremony in Sochi, were spilled by the Swiss Olympic team.
Reports say the ban is on any device branding, not just Apple, but who else has a logo that’s so instantly recognizable ala Apple?
The rule also appears to apply only to athletes, rather than other attendees of the opening ceremonies.
As an official sponsor of the Olympics, Samsung is within Olympic rules to ask for the “ban,” as all competitors, coaches, trainers, and officials are required to abide by Rule 40 of the Olympic charter. The rule forbids athletes from mentioning any non-Olympic sponsor companies.
Those breaking the rule can be punished via removal of accreditation and financial penalties, and can even be disqualified from participating in the games. The IOC places great importance on protecting sponsors, saying, and quite rightfully so, the games would not be possible without the sponsors.