sports in the spotlight
Posted by Mark J. Miller on September 30, 2011 10:01 AM
The Rugby World Cup that is currently underway in New Zealand has set new precedents in its attempts to scare off and stop ambush marketing of any sort.
The next big event to step up and try to show how it’s going to crush ambush marketers of all stripes will be the 2012 London Olympics (the unfortunately numbered XXX games, though you understandably won’t find that anywhere on London’s Olympic website).
“A proposed amendment to the Olympics Act 2006, due to come before Parliament by the end of this year, will reverse the customary burden of proof in criminal cases,” Marketing Magazine reports. “Senior marketers could therefore be found guilty of an offence unless they can prove that ambush activity for their brand took place without their knowledge, or that they took reasonable steps to prevent it.”
After all, in such a financially strapped world, big events such as these are attempting to protect the investment of the corporations that actually shell out the big bucks to be corporate sponsors rather than the creative, lower-cost marketers who are trying to sneak in publicity, whether it’s through skywriting, streakers, or women in matching orange outfits.
“The extraordinary derogation from the normal position could also catch out directors of official sponsors whose staff or agencies overstep the strict letter of their sponsor rights,” said Nick Johnson, partner at law firm Osborne Clarke, Marketing Magazine reports.
Let’s hope the law is as tough on actual ambushers as it is on sneaky advertisers.