It would appear that the International Olympic Committee bestirred itself from its antediluvian luddite position on online media and demanded that the bidders for broadcast rights cease the ass-hatted pre-Tivo practice of taping and delaying coverage for prime-time American audiences and make available the athletic events in realtime AND online.
Online was a misery of DMA takedowns during Beijing (which I lived firsthand thanks to the paranoia of the IOC that any manifestation of YouTube video would undercut the value of its crown jewel broadcast rights).
While details are sparse from the New York Times coverage today, the second paragraph of Richard Sandomir's article stands out: "...Comcast responded with a knockout bid and a promise that it would show every event live, on television or online, a recognition of the immediacy of technology and a drastic reversal of NBC’s policy of taping sports to show them to the largest possible audience in prime time."
If you've ever watched Olympic coverage in Europe on EuroSport you're accustomed to getting complete coverage of every event, , no matter how long-tailed, in realtime. Think hours of men skiing with rifles and you get the European viewing experience, versus the usual NBC saccharine around some perky pre-pube gymnast who overcame Demeaning Plebney while ardent fans of the 50 meter air pistol get bupkus and have to scrounge around online in hopes someone, somewhere encoded a feed of their passion.
If the Games make it truly online -- and they sort of have to now that the world is 100% obsessed with video the way they want it, when they want it -- then London ought to be a delight for longtail sports fans. Let's just hope NBC gets its online act together in time, doesn't strike a Devil's deal with Microsoft Silverlight, and delivers a multiplatform stream (iPad, droid, PC) that kicks ass and finally delivers on the promise of a truly interactive Olympics. If I were at NBC interactive I'd be on the phone to the MLB.com guys and looking for some technical ninja help.
The online rights and pay-per-view revenue should, in theory, kick the stuffing out of the old broadcast rights that typified the Dick Ebersol era when there were three networks, no Tivo, and no Interweb. My fingers are crossed.
Thanks to Rohit Bhargava, Kaitlyn Wilkins, and the team at Ogilvy's 360 Digital Influence Project for pulling this together and posting it. Olympic wrap up post coming from me later this week or weekend.
Wish you could read it, it's pretty good but it's behind the subscription wall.
It worked for Sony in '64 and Samsung in '88. This year in Beijing, Lenovo joined their ranks, leveraging its Olympic sponsorship to develop global brand awareness.
Unique about Lenovo's approach was the company's use of new media, which both fortified its traditional marketing and created a new level of athlete and fan interaction that will no doubt change the way the world engages with future Olympics.
The campaign centered around an athlete blogging program, the first allowed by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), and included the first Olympic-themed Facebook application. It was also the first to use a Zumobi smartphone application in connection with a major event.
And the results? Well over a million visits to the campaign Web sites, more than 1.8 Million Facebook views, 60,000 smartphone downloads, and perhaps above all else: discernible global recognition."
My wrap up post to come. Almost done. Waiting for some more content and then I'll publish.
Caroline Lind and Elle Logan, US Women's 8+ Gold Medalists
Caroline Lind on the left, Elle Logan on the right. Gold medal in rowing in the women's eight.I think everyone at the USA House tonight asked for a picture with the two champions. The excitement was infectious.
Big Olympic cliche is the trading of pins. Little medal/enamel trinkets. I thought it was an athlete thing -- "I'll trade you my Russia for your USA pin" -- but it turns out everybody from the sponsors to the teams to cities bidding for future Games are in on the action.
If you are cool (I saw this first on colleague Andrew Barron) you show off your pins on the neck ribbon that holds your security pass. As of today I have contracted pin fever and am as manic as a jackdaw (I think that is the name of the bird that steals shiny objects to decorate its nest). Here is my collection after five days. I am on track to make my flair quota.
Taken at our product showcase on the Olympic Green yesterday. Have a choice of three backgrounds. Great Wall. Bird's Nest. Water Cube.
Operating on minimal sleep now. No time to be intelligent. Photos uploading now.
Onanistic photography isn't the easiest thing in the world to pull off, especially when you're goofy from two Tsingtaos, jetlag, no dinner, and the most perspiration filled day in your life.
Beijing is crazy. Our hospitalty center is hopping, the Olympic Green was just stupendous. Tomorrow .... opening ceremonies. I'm not attending. Tickets are very, very hard to get. I intend to lay low and work with the bloggers and get some photos uploaded. Lunched with the good crew from Ogilvy, sat in a lot of cabs, tried to figure out the subway system, and did an utterly insane Crossfit workout-of-the-day which nearly did me in. Way too tired to be intelligent right now.
So, nice uniform, hey? I so called the jaunty visor a mile away. I especially like the cuffs on the sleeves -- green on my right left arm for starboard. Red on the left right for port (If I walked backwards, thx for pointing P.Kim).