Pursuant to the Olympic Charter, the IOC has granted the various NOCs and OCOGs the right to use Olympic marks, as long as they receive the IOC's approval.
In short, the IOC is responsible for ensuring that the NOCs and OCOGs comply with the Olympic Charter when designing Olympic logos.
An Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games (OCOG) is responsible for constructing necessary venues and stadiums; providing food and lodging for hundreds of athletes and officials; and ensuring adequate security; not to mention staging the largest competition in sports.
This is the particular problem that the Rio OCOG was faced with last year after unveiling its logo for the 2016 Olympics.
(2) The Rio OCOG is a nonprofit, private company, located in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
(8) The Rio OCOG stated several reasons for choosing this design: (1) the fact that the figures are holding hands represents one of the ideals of the Olympic movement, namely "togetherness in diversity;" (2) the fact that the figures are dancing communicates Rio's joie de vivre; (3) the three colors used in the design-green, yellow and blue-mimic the colors of the Brazilian flag; and (4) the outer shape of the design traces the shape of Rio's most famous natural landmark, the Pao d'Acucar, or Sugarloaf Mountain.
The Rio OCOG unveiled this logo on December 31, 2010 at an extravagant New Year's Eve party in Rio de Janeiro.
(22) Shortly after these similarities were reported, the Internet was abuzz with allegations that the Rio OCOG stole the idea for its logo from the Telluride Foundation.
While this particular controversy between the Rio OCOG and the Telluride Foundation is new, controversies surrounding Olympic marks are not.
(30) The media speculated that the Beijing OCOG would not be able to register its logo to receive trademark protection, as required by Olympic Rules.
Last year, the Sochi OCOG released the design of its four mascots for the Sochi Olympic Games.