Tokyo 2020 Olympics Scraps Logo Over Plagiarism Claim
The organizers of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games have scrapped the original logo design after a Belgian artist claimed that his design was stolen.
The Tokyo 2020 logo, designed by Kenjiro Sano and unveiled last month, features the letter T with a red dot, supposed to represent a beating heart, but critics say it resembles to the Japanese flag.
Belgian artist Olivier Debie told BBC News that the design looks like a logo he designed in 2013 for a theater, Theatre de Liege. Debie and Theatre de Liege filed a lawsuit to prevent the Tokyo Olympics from using their design.
Toshio Muto, director general of the Tokyo Olympic organizing committee, said that the committee is certain that the logos are different, but decided to play it safe.
"We became aware of new things this weekend, and there was a sense of crisis that we thought could not be ignored," he said.
According to The Guardian, the organizing committee decided to scrap the logo at a crisis meeting on Tuesday, attended by Tokyo's governor, Yoichi Masuzoe, and head of the Japanese Olympic committee Tsunekazu Takeda.
Masuzoe told BBC News that he wants an explanation. "I feel like we have been betrayed," he said.
Sano denied copying the logo, but admitted that his team had copied other artists' work for a beer promotion, and apparently faces other plagiarism accusations.
This, in addition to stadium construction woes, has caused speculation that Tokyo may not be as ready for the Olympics as once believed. The need to design an entirely new logo and design campaign could put promotional efforts on hold for a while as well. Also, let's hope Tokyo's mascot is better than London's in 2012.