I just read Jeff Veen's piece on how jarringly sucky the recently unveiled 2012 London Olympic logo is. Admittedly, the man has a point. In the Chinese Hell of Evil Tetris, this is where I imagine all ne'er-do-well video gamers would spend eternity suffering severe migraines and the occasional stimuli-induced seizure.
While I agree with Jeff on the aesthetics of the logo (the man did, after all, help redesign Google Analytics to my great benefit), I don't know if he's being realistic when he suggests that sports logos should "[combine] the thrill and pageantry of athletic competition with the nuanced craft of graphic design." I can't think of a single sports event logo that succeeds in suggesting how impressive the sport itself is. Logos don't do that very well. In my mind, the logo is basically an empty receptacle in which an organization can build a brand image. The logo doesn't start with that brand image. It takes years to get that. Four years isn't enough (even if it weren't painful to look at) for an Olympic logo. I personally appreciate the folks behind the Superbowl logo, who evidently gave up and decided that such events were so transient and impossible to characterize by nature, that they basically just said what it was in big letters and called it a logo. There's thrill and pageantry right there for you.
So yes, call the thing what it is (I'm going with "aggressively assy," as I'm a big fan of alliteration), but don't set yourself up by expecting that much from an Olympic logo. I think they should just use the rings (the one sports logo that, after 80+ solid years of use, maybe does have some emotion tied to it, as Seth Godin suggests) and leave it at that. It would have cost way less than $800K.