A reluctance from the vast majority of International Olympic Committee (IOC) members to engage with the media in any way is the source of long-running frustration among the Olympic press corps.
At IOC Sessions, most will walk past - as is their right - the assembled group of journalists without a passing glance.
Some will stop for idle chit-chat before hastily departing when confronted with the terrifying possibility of going on the record, while only a few will be willing to speak into a recording device.
In many ways, their disinclination towards speaking their mind is understandable, given the apparent concerted effort from the administration to quash any opinions which stray from the line favoured by those in charge.
Whenever an IOC member does go against the grain or opts not to follow blindly the direction of the leadership, they are often met with a swift and stern rebuke from the top brass or from one of their fellow members who may have particularly lofty ambitions.
Olympic gold medallists Guy Drut and Hayley Wickenheiser have both found themselves on the receiving end of this treatment in recent weeks.
In an interview with France Télévisions, Drut had the temerity to offer a sensible and thoughtful opinion on what the coronavirus pandemic meant for Paris 2024 and the future of the Olympic Games in general.
The Montreal 1976 110 metres hurdles champion and Paris 2024 Executive Board member said the COVID-19 crisis was an opportunity to "reinvent" the Olympics and to make the event more "sober and responsible".
Drut also suggested, again sensibly, that Paris 2024 might need to refine and review its project, which he feels has become "obsolete, outdated and disconnected from reality" in light of the global health situation.
Cue the less than favourable response from Pierre-Olivier Beckers-Vieujant, chairman of the IOC Coordination Commission for Paris 2024 and who some have tipped as a rising star with a bright future within the organisation.
Aside from claims that Drut had "thrown confusion" around the Paris 2024 project and taking umbrage with the words the Frenchman had used, Beckers-Vieujant also said it was "unfortunate" that Drut had “gone it alone".
Of course, this may be purely Beckers-Vieujant’s own opinion, but it just so happens to seamlessly align with the narrative highlighted by Wickenheiser weeks earlier - that the IOC wants to disseminate one message and one message only and there is no room for alternative viewpoints.
Wickenheiser, a four-time Olympic ice hockey champion, criticised the IOC for continuing to insist Tokyo 2020 would go ahead as planned and felt strongly enough to post her comments, seemingly unprompted, on Twitter.
The Canadian said the IOC had been "insensitive and irresponsible" with its approach and that persisting with its stance that Tokyo 2020 would open on time was "an injustice to the athletes training and global population at large".
"I got a message about 24 hours later which stated ‘what a pity’ it was that I spoke out without asking the IOC first," Wickenheiser told insidethegames last month.
"That’s how it often works. They like to try to contain the message and have one message, but I don’t think a democratically elected institution like the IOC should be censoring its members, especially in times like this."
What made Wickenheiser’s intervention even more intriguing was that it represented a rare example of an IOC Athletes’ Commission member breaking rank by going against the administration.
A frequent criticism of the IOC Athletes’ Commission is that its interests are too closely aligned with the IOC itself. Instead of being an independent voice challenging the leadership to do the best for athletes, too often their statements and rhetoric merely support those of the powers-that-be.
Others to have subverted that stance in the past are all too aware of the consequences.
Wickenheiser’s status as an athlete and one of the great women’s ice hockey players added further credence to her opinion, which perhaps partly explains why the rebuke from the IOC was so firm.
Just as the likes of Drut and Wickenheiser are free to speak their minds, their fellow members are equally free to publicly disagree or condemn their comments.
But the coordinated manner in which members who express an opinion different to the IOC’s liking are castigated paints a picture of a dictatorship masking as a democracy. After all, democracy is supposed to allow room for opposing views.
It strengthens the portrayal of Bach as a ruthless, power-hungry leader and is surely among the reasons why the Session now represents little more than an echo chamber.
Drut and Wickenheiser receiving responses asking them why they did not approach the IOC first also gives the impression of over-control. Why should two Olympians, former athletes and high-profile administrators in their own right get permission from the IOC to give their personal opinion?
The fact that quotes attributed to them will often be accompanied by the caveat that they are IOC members does not give the IOC the right to dictate their views.
By opting for this method, the IOC is, in some ways, doing a disservice to its members, many of whom are experienced sports officials and athletes whose opinions are both informative and newsworthy.
The IOC is also doing itself no favours when it comes to wider perception of the organisation and the Olympic Movement. But don’t expect it to change anytime soon.