Sochi 2014 Polar Bear Mascot Center of Copyright Dispute
Russian artist Viktor Chizhikov is claiming that the polar bear chosen as one of the three mascots for the XXII Olympic Winter Games, taking place in Sochi, southwestern Russia, in February 2014, is a copy of the Mishka bear cub he created for the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow.
Last month, during a live national television broadcast, the Russian public chose three mascots – a rabbit, a leopard and the controversial polar bear. Following the vote, the creator of the Mishka bear (left) from the 1980 Olympics publicly stated the polar bear (right) was a copy of his mascot.
“It’s exactly the same as mine: the eyes, the nose, the mouth, the smile, though it’s askew,” Viktor Chizhikov stated. “I don’t like it when people steal, the author always feels it especially painfully”, he added.
The Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee has released a statement denying copyright infringement accusations.
For more information, please contact Jelena Jankovic at our Balkan Regional Office.
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