Intellectual Property Enclosure and Economic Discourse in the 2012 London Olympic Games
Media, Culture and Society, 37(3), pp. 409-421, 2015
18 Pages Posted: 25 Jul 2015
Date Written: January 28, 2015
Special legislation associated with mega sporting events has enabled new forms of cultural enclosure, effectively commoditising aspects of cultural expression that previously remained in the public domain. In this paper, the authors examine the tension between economic and political justifications for hosting the Olympics and the intellectual property enclosures that are imposed upon host nations. These enclosures extend beyond what is traditionally protected under trade mark law, to include ‘generic’ terms. Enabling market competitors to freely use generic, descriptive language is a core doctrine of trade mark law, seeking to balance monopoly IP rights with free market competition. The authors evaluate the impact of special legislative enclosures on the public interest, and argue that collective access to expression should be more carefully considered in political and economic calculations of the value of the Olympics.
Keywords: Olympics, trade mark, enclosure, IP, mega sporting events, urban development, small business
JEL Classification: D23, K00, H59, H71, L33, L83
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation