15 January 2016Copyright

Tokyo Olympics hits second IP snag

An architecture firm that submitted a winning proposal for the design of the Olympic stadium for the 2020 Games in Tokyo has rejected a call to give up its copyright for the design.

A proposal by Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA), a UK-based firm, was originally chosen as part of an international contest to be the winning design for the centrepiece stadium. However, the design was dropped last year.

Last month a cheaper design was chosen instead.

In a statement to Reuters, the company said: “We can confirm that we received and rejected a written request ... to modify our existing contract to allow the transfer of the copyright of the detailed design for the Japan National Stadium, owned by ZHA, in exchange for an overdue final payment.”

The company added that it had been trying to finalise an outstanding payment for “months of work” with the Japan Sport Council, the body in charge of the stadium, since October last year.

ZHA previously designed the aquatics centre that was used at the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

It is the second intellectual property-related setback to affect the preparation for the 2020 Games.

In August last year, WIPR reported that the Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games confirmed that its logo for the tournament had been withdrawn due to copyright concerns.

Kenjiro Sano’s design was criticised by Belgian designer Olivier Debie for being too similar to a logo that he designed for theatre company Théâtre de Liège in 2013.

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