Update 11/11/13 6:39PM ET: International Olympic Committee spokesman Mark Adams told USA Today the reports of Russian broadcasters and the IOC banning journalists from using social media at the 2013 Winter Olympics were grossly misinformed. Accredited reporters are free to use Twitter, Vine, Instagram, and other social media platforms in their coverage of the games (presumably, as long as that coverage doesn’t promote homosexuality to minors.)
The original story is below.
If you were hoping to shoot some awesome videos at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, you’re out of luck. A journalist from Russian news agency RIA Novosti informed his fellow sports reporters that anyone caught shooting video at the games will be stripped of his or her accreditation.
Hating on Russia’s Winter Olympics hosting duties has been in vogue thanks to the Russian government’s anti-gay policies, but this decision seems to stem from the policy of International Olympic Committee. IOC spokesman Mark Adams noted that video is prohibited due to broadcast rights restrictions, and RIA journalist Vasily Konov expressed a similar sentiment during a seminar. Konov noted that using phones to capture real time footage “will be considered a serious violation and will result in cancellation of accreditation.”
The news has already reached SourceFed, where Ross Everett and Steve Zaragoza mocked it as part of a game show called ‘What’s Russia Done Now?’
Broadcast rights may be a big deal, but the IOC’s decision to ban Vine and Instagram video is a sign of its age. The top brands on Instagram include sports leagues like the NBA and NFL, both of which have scored millions of views on the platform. If the IOC members want to sacrifice that exposure because they’re worried about six second videos infringing on a copyright, that’s their funeral.
On the other hand, snapshots will be allowed and encouraged. For these Olympic Games, still photos will have to do.