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Tokyo 2020 Olympics logo scrapped amid allegations of plagiarism

Tokyo 2020 Olympics logo scrapped amid allegations of plagiarism

Posted September. 01, 2015 23:09,   


Japan’s preparation for the 2020 Summer Olympic Games, which is to be held in Tokyo for the second time after 1964, is dealt another blow. While construction of the main stadium has been delayed making it unclear whether the construction can be completed before the opening date, the preparation committee has decided to scrap the Olympics logo, to add insult injury for Tokyo.

The 2020 Olympic committee announced on Tuesday, “The head of the organizing committee, Yoshiro Mori, the governor of Tokyo, Yoichi Masuzoe and the head of the Japanese Olympic Committee (JOC), Tsunekazu Takeda, have agreed to scrap the Tokyo Olympics logo.“

The Tokyo Olympics logo designed by Japanese art director Kenjiro Sano was unveiled in July. However, allegations have been made that the logo resembles the emblem of "Theater de Liege" in Belgium right after its disclosure to the public. Designer Olivier Debie who designed the theatre’s emblem later took legal action to block the International Olympic Committee (IOC) from using the designs in August and raised a lawsuit for prohibition of use of the logo to the Belgium court.

Sano held a press conference on August 5 and strongly denied that his work is original. The organizing committee made public how the logo had been made by Sano. However, critics called for investigation onto the integrity of his work and the committee decided to scrap the logo, which means the committee has admitted the plagiarism claim.

During his visit to Japan on August 25, IOC Vice President John Coates said that the main stadium construction must be completed six months before the opening date of Tokyo Olympic Games, which is July 4, 2020. However, Olympic Minister Toshiaky Endo said it may be difficult to meet that IOC target because April that Japan set as the completion date was already a tight deadline. In response, IOC said it did not request such a grand-scale stadium and Tokyo is wasting time when the public outraged over skyrocketing costs.