That will mean more promotion and compensation for athletes, possibly even more so for big TV advertisers such as Coca-Cola.
Still, there is some downside for TV advertisers with this change, because much creative during the games typically has Olympics themes as a key component -- and the rules still prohibit athletes from participating in such ads.
Only a few years ago, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Science also relaxed its rules for advertising during the Academy Awards telecast. Movie studios now can advertise upcoming film only – not those previously released, and definitely not those nominated for Oscars.
These two changes in ad rules may signal that TV producers recognize that competition for consumers’ media time is getting more intense -- while TV ratings, even for live TV programming, are getting smaller.
Perhaps even more important, big TV advertisers are getting antsy, with some increasingly looking to shift more dollars to digital. Traditional TV producers/content providers need to keep an eye on this trend, and do all they can to keep those advertisers happy.