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Ron Judd's Olympics Insider

Ron Judd, an Olympics junkie and Seattle Times columnist who has covered Olympic sports since 1997, will use this space to serve up news and opinion on the Summer and Winter Games -- also inviting you to chime in on Planet Earth's biggest get-together.

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June 12, 2008 11:32 PM

Step slowly away from that unauthorized souvenir

Posted by Ron Judd

Games organizers in Vancouver today announced big new efforts to cut down on faux Vancouver 2010 merchandise and fake tickets, through innovative methods including the deployment of "secret shoppers" looking to buy counterfeit goods or scalped or fake tickets. It's an effort launched by most host cities a year or two before the Games, and it's easy to see why: big money is at stake.

Vancouver Organizing Committee officials say it's easy to check your Vancouver 2010 merchandise's authenticity by its official hologram seal (is it really so difficult for counterfeiters to fake those, too?) But we've got a few tips of our own on spotting faux Oly goods.

Telltale signs your Vancouver 2010 souvenir might be fake:

-- Your statue of Games emblem Ilanaaq the Inukshuk has Andy Rooney eyebrows.

-- The Canadian flag sticker on the bottom bears a fig leaf, not maple.

-- You hold it above your head down on Robson Street for more than an hour, and not a single protestor bothers to lob a paint-filled balloon at it.

---It's hand signed by "Juan Antonio Sandwich."

Don't say we didn't warn you.

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Blogroll and links The official International Olympic Committtee site, with news releases, a searchable Olympic medals database and other archival information. Olympic news site from one of the Games' primary sponsors.
NBC Olympics columnist Alan Abrahamson's column/blog
Chicago Tribune Olympic sports writer Philip Hersh's blog U.S. Olympic Committee's athlete web site. Ed and Sheila Hula's Olympic News Service (subscription). News service with audio, video and text coverage of Olympic sports, during and between Olympics. Free, but charges for live video feed subscriptions. Beijing Organizing Committee Web site. Vancouver Organizing Committee's 2010 Winter Games site. London 2012 Summer Games site. Sochi, Russia's 2014 Winter Games site. Candidate city Chicago's summer 2016 bid committee site.
Olympic swimmer Tara Kirk's highly entertaining WCSN blog
Bellevue Olympian Scott Macartney's WCSN alpine ski-racing blog
Other WCSN Olympic athlete blogs.