Israel’s Olympic Mascot Ruled Copyright Violation

Posted on February 21, 2012


The Tel Aviv District Court has ordered the Olympic Committee of Israel (OCI) to discontinue use of its cactus-shaped mascot due to its similarity to a 1970’s Israeli Educational Television character, “Kishkashta.” Educational TV sued OCI alleging copyright infringement. The court awarded Educational TV attorneys fees but no compensation, finding that the character had not yet been used. Nonetheless, the court ordered OCI to remove the mascot, “Shpitzik,” from all publications and websites.

The similarities between Kishkashta and Shpitzik seem more than coincidental. The court explained, “It seems that the resemblance might be misleading … In both cases the size of the head is disproportional, and that’s true of his hands as well. The ears are designed in a similar way, as are the thorns.” The court also observed that the shades of green are “almost identical.”

Read the full article: Israel must stop using Olympic Mascot.

Thanks to Kristina Bauer for her assistance with this post.