On Friday, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) quietly modified its rule prohibiting athletes from making political statements during the Olympics.
The rule in question, Rule 50, has been a long-standing safeguard against allowing athletes to protest during the Olympic games. However, in response to mounting pressure from athletes and the recent controversy surrounding anthem-snubbing U.S. hammer thrower Gwen Berry, the IOC has moved to allow athletes much more leeway in expressing their political views.
According to USA Today :
Under the new guidance, athletes will be able to express their views on the field of play before competition so long is it is not targeted against people, not disruptive and not otherwise prohibited by national Olympic committees or international federations. Expressions during competition, in the Olympic village and during ceremonies — including medal, opening and closing ceremonies — remain prohibited under a longstanding rule in the Olympic charter baring ‘political, religious or racial propaganda.’