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Controversial London 2012 logo sparks public backlash

LONDON - The Wolff Olins-designed logo for the 2012 London Olympic Games has sparked an unprecedented public and media backlash, with calls mounting for the image to be axed.

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An online petition, created through the Go Petition website, urging organisers to scrap it now has just under 33,000 signatures and medical experts say an animated version of it used on TV and online campaigns could trigger epileptic fits.

Politicians have also spoken out against the logo, with Mayor of London Ken Livingstone criticising the failure to carry out health checks on promotional activity, and Philip Davies MP , culture, media and sport select committee member, tabling a motion in the House of Commons calling for the logo to be axed.

Speaking on BBC London 94.9 last night, Livingstone, who was not involved in decisions surrounding the design, said: "If you employ someone to design a car and it kills you, you're pretty unhappy about that. If you employ someone to design a logo for you and they haven't done a basic health check you have to ask what they do for their money."

The controversial logo took Wolff Olins around a year to create at an estimated cost of £400,000. It replaced the previous logo, which featured the words "London 2012" intertwined with ribbons in the shape of the Thames.

Odds on the logo being scrapped are now 10-1, according to bookmakers William Hill, but the organising committee is adamant it is here to stay, although the animated campaign has been pulled and will be re-edited.

In a statement at the launch of the logo earlier this week, Lord Sebastian Coe, chairman of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games, said: "This is the vision at the very heart of our brand. It will define the venues we build and the games we hold and act as a reminder of our promise to use the Olympic spirit to inspire everyone and reach out to young people around the world. It is an invitation to take part and be involved."

Others to back the design include Jacque Rogge, the IOC President, who said it was "a truly innovative brand logo that graphically captures the essence of the London 2012 Olympic Games".

Colin Grannell, executive vice-president of sponsorship at Olympic sponsor Visa, said he was "delighted" with it, in particular the "freedom" given to adapt the logo to sponsors' own brand colours.

Others have come out in favour of the design on Brand Republic's forums although the overwhelming response has been negative

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