Olympic athletes banned from using social media for promotion

Olympic athletes banned from using social media for promotion

The International Olympics Committee have warned athletes to not use social media to promote their sponsors. Olympians from around the world were outraged and launched a social media campaign on Twitter against the committee.

Rule 40 which appears in the athletes code of conduct warns against disregarding the guidelines on social media use as a promotional tool and those that do will be disqualified from the games.

In a desperate attempt to pressure the IOC into positive swing Olympians tweeted away mainly using campaign hashtags such as #WeDemandChange and #Rule40.

Because of rules such as Rule 40 athletes are not even allowed to use pictures of themselves in posts or tweets irrespective of whatever reason they decide.

Leo Manzano an American middle distance runner was ordered to remove a photograph of his shoes from the social network where he had posted it or face the consequences. That is quite an order.

Some examples of tweets amongst many others:


Social networks have been bursting with messages of encouragement, updates of wins and dynamic images of some Olympians. This is what we should continue doing right throughout the games in giving extra exposure and expressing words of congratulations to the deserving athletes representing all countries.

What do you think about the IOC‘s decision to ban athletes from using social media for promotion, do you also think it is wrong that they stand to be disqualified should they do so? Would love to know your thoughts.

Blog by Daniela Bascelli (Social Media and Digital Marketing Strategist | Trainer at Onyx Digital Team). Follow Daniela on Twitter: @danielabascelli and follow the team @onyxdigitalteam. For more information on our upcoming social media training and service offerings, please contact us.

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Daniela Bascelli

Digital Marketing Specialist/CEO at Onyx Digital
My passion and dedication to the industry has inspired wide transformation where companies have adopted the “social business” mind-set and key online-strategies being incorporated as a tool to offer more value to their target-audiences whilst creating high visibility for themselves.
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