How was your Olympics?

My country bias.

On Sunday, the 2012 Summer Olympic Games finished. The competitions seemed to proceed more or less smoothly, and people can discuss whether the security measures and new complexes were beneficial for the East London area. Most of us experienced the games via various media outlets. Being an American with cable TV, I had several NBC channels to choose from. I understood why the main NBC coverage was tape-delayed — many of us have to work, and we choose temporary media blackout over putting too much effort into seeing the big-name events. I was even able to watch Olympics soccer and basketball games live on affiliated channels. I understood why they had profile featurettes on athletes, and was glad that they also featured non-American athletes.

However, NBC often acted like an event was airing live, cutting commercials in and out of longer events, and fast-forwarding the events after the ads instead of pausing where the action had left off. They also helped kick a reporter off Twitter for a time, chose to replace a memorial for the victims of 7/7 terrorist attacks with an interview with Michael Phelps, and cut out other acts from the opening and closing ceremonies (including the first half of Arctic Monkeys’ set, and all of Muse’s performance of the actual London 2012 theme song). While athletes broke records, a few commentators spat out prepackaged phrases like broken records. How many times did we hear that USA gymnast John Orozco is from the Bronx? NBC became mid-2000s-era History Channel  on the penultimate night of coverage, with an hour-long recap of London’s World War II struggles.

Other color commentary and segments were expanded to inane lengths. I had thought nothing could be worse than CBS’ coverage of the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics, which I remember was inundated with so many special interest features in place of more timely coverage of actual events. Neither broadcast was as bad as Peru’s current coverage [1], and NBC did have complete and individual event streaming options available on its website, some sans commentary. With all of the network’s poor choices,  though, quite a few of my American friends opted for BBC live streams instead.

Cheer up, Prince Harry. At least you got to see the events live.

Diandra Rodriguez

Proudly Latinasian NorCal American.

3 Responses

  1. amy says:

    I watched it on ESPN during the first weak, then I gave up on television, and did all my watching online. I’m a little bummed that the IOC didn’t upload the competitions on their YouTube channel, instead only uploading highlights. :(

    I think the major problem with broadcast, for me, was that I was interested in different teams China and the US were easy to follow coz everyone were interested in them, same with home team GB, but there was no coverage to Canada here because… well, it’s Canada xD But it’s my bias. There was also little coverage to any of the Koreas, and Japan, mainly because since we’re in Latin America, the broadcast followed the Latin American teams competing, so it was understandable.

    There was too much negative media for my taste this year T_T like, it didn’t have anything to do with GB’s politics (like when the Beijing games happened LOL), but the actually lack of organization by the events. This much controversy made it a little sour for my family, we just sorta tuned out.

    Having said that… love weights – nerve-racking and all for the love of iron xD, love diving, table tennis, swimming (thought it did get bitter at times…), and… I think they should’ve covered for some of the ‘extreme’ sports like Kajak and Motocross ~~ I also love volleyball and handball xD

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