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Sohu.com Claims Exclusive Internet Advertising Rights For Beijing Olympics

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sohu1.jpgChinese portal (and NASDAQ listed) Sohu.com is claiming exclusive internet advertising rights for the Beijing Olympics, resulting in a dispute between Chinese internet companies.

Sohu.com paid $30 million in 2005 for the rights to host the games website for the Beijing Olympics and to use the logo of the event, however is now claiming the deal includes exclusive rights to host all advertising by Beijing Games sponsors that use the official games logo. As AFP points out, this would be the like NBC claiming that advertisers could only advertise Olympic related ads on their network, and could not do so elsewhere.

The International Olympic Committee has said that the deal should not include exclusive advertising, however the Beijing Olympic Organizing Committee (the BOCOG) is yet to rule on the claim.

Other Chinese sites have formed an alliance against Sohu.com to fight the claim and plan to offer Olympic Internet content with advertising in 2008.

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