When it comes to brand recognition, the Olympic Committee's interlocking five rings logo is right up there with Nike's swoosh and Apple's apple. Which made the glitch during the opening ceremony of the recent Sotchi Winter Olympics that much more memorable. Five snowflakes were supposed to float above the heads of spectators and join to form the classic rings. Nice idea but one stubborn snowflake refused to make the transformation, leaving the logo a ring short. Oh, the shame of it all. In an unanticipated display of good humor, this epic logo fail was referenced during the closing ceremony, in which dancers initially formed the four rings and snowflake version, before the latter expanded into the fifth ring. Well played!
But if the Olympic Committee thought that incident was behind them, they were wrong. According to The Associated Press, Russian businessman Dmitry Medvedev has begun using the defective version of the logo in ads for his luxury construction firm and has now filed to secure trademark rights to it. The IOC, as you can imagine, is peeved and stated that it “is aware of this matter and is opposed to the trademark application because of its similarity with the Olympic Symbol." While Medvedev's application will no doubt eventually be turned down, he is apparently free to use it during the year or more the approval process will take place. Which is long enough to milk the juice out it. A case of capitalism, Russian style?