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Sir Rols

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Everything posted by Sir Rols

  1. Because every Olympic comp deserves a white elephant...
  2. And it's now totally official. LA has announced it's pulling out of 2024, and changed their Facebook presence to 2028: https://www.facebook.com/pg/la2028/videos/?ref=page_internal
  3. An early start to this topic. I'm sure Durban sandshark will kep us all informed as well: Tokyo's Games win ups ante for $200m rights package deal - See more at: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/media/broadcast/tokyos-games-win-ups-ante-for-200m-rights-package-deal/story-fna045gd-1226719618449#sthash.j5m99xAk.dpuf
  4. Okay, one interesting point to me to come out of Rob’s article is how often it’s the cities themselves that are contributing to the over-lavish cost of their games in a quest for civic glory rather than financial and social prudence. Not that that’s any great revelation - we’ve seen cities from Athens to Beijing to Sochi to Rio insist it’s more important four them to splash their cash to make a grand impression rather than adopt modesty as a virtue. But Rob’s illustrations of the bull-headed pride, against IOC suggestion, that prompted PyeongChang to insist on their own sliding track rather than use Nagano’s, and Milano-Cortina’s insistence of refurbishing the Cortina track rather than use one in St Moritz or Innsbruck, did strike a notion to me. Basically, the IOC needs to be a bit more prescriptive on that particular point. It seems clear they’re quite willing to be a bit more flexible on the issue of bobsleigh tracks (as they should be). Now they should insist on it. Rather than just “suggest” cheaper alternatives that cities can just throw back in their face in the name of “pride”, the IOC should, just before the start of each four year bid cycle, regularly accredit a list of existing bob facilities across the regions - there’s a decent roaster of them across Europe, North America and Asia - and then specify that any bidders MUST make use of one of those in their plans. Whammo, one major cost item that often gets bad publicity solved. Sure, it’s just one item, and there’s lots of other issues the IOC needs to look at as well, but it’s one concrete step and gesture that could show they’re sincere in willingness to make changes and concessions. And an approach that could possibly be adopted to other areas - velodromes, ski jumping sites, white water venues. I’m sure others can come up with other suggestions. And it’s also about time some of the Sports Federations had a bit of a check in their insistence on lavish new venues in each new host - as far as often forcing cities to go back on their original more modest plans.
  5. There's been a few mentions lately of some of the classic books about the Olympics and the IOC, like Jennings' and such, and was wondering lately what particular books about the olympics they recommend, or what they think about some of the standard references. What do members think are some of the better books about the games? Anyway, I've a nice solid library of tomes about the games at home, have been reading such volumes for decades, and thought I might start a reviews thread to share some of my thoughts about books about the games, and which Id recommend everyone read. Maybe spark some disagreements. To get it started: The Lords of the Rings/The New Lords of the Rings By Vyv Simson & Andrew Jennings The Great Olympic Swindle By Andrew Jennings 3/5 Is there any one here who hasn’t read these? Surely compulsory reading among all interested in the IOC and host city bidding. And salaciously readable in all its documentation of the dark side and sleazy recent history of the lords of Lausanne. Yet, for all Jennings' (he's the one that kept the vendetta going) perfect hits, I think his blind adversity lead him into as many misses of his marks. He’s the Pilger or Michael Moore of Olympic journalism, and share their same propensity for never letting balance get in the way of sheer polemics and propaganda. And while they are a welcome, refreshing “balance for some of the more hagiographical studies of the IOC” as Eusebius recently put it, in the end, they let their venom get in the way of objectivity. _____________________________ Athens to Athens By David Miller 3/5 Actually, I think there’s an “Athens to Beijing” version of this book out now, but assume it’s just an updated final chapter. Miller’s a bit of a worry when it comes to Olympic journalism. He’s been a shameless propagandist and unofficial personal "Poet Laureate"(see his Olympic Revolution book) for JAS and was ensconced in some ethical scandal arising from his Olympic journalism. And while this book is true to form in shying from making any too strong critiques of the IOC, it’s one of the more detailed and accessible recordings of the earlier history of the IOC as a body, right back to when it was a twinkling in the dapper Baron de Coubertin’s eyes. A great source for obscure facts and stories from early bidding histories and IOC turf wars, it tends to be best when chronicling the history of the Olympics and IOC up to the end of the Brundage-Killanin eras. It also tries to cover the sporting highlights of individual games, but is more impressionistic in this – almost like a Greenspan movie. The odd obvious factual clanger too also limits its reliability as an unimpeachable source. ______________________________ Inside The Olympics By Dick Pound 4.5/5 I’ve often enough mentioned before that if I had to choose just one book to recommend as a “Bible” for anyone interested in Olympic politics and bidding, this is it. By the man who’s been at the centre of it all – from TV negotiations to doping scandals and policing, to whole gamut of host bidding politics, this comes across as straight talking and blunt as the Pound does himself. And it also conveys his wry sense of humour – his quotes from Samaranch using His Excellency’s accent are often hilarious. Pound’s not afraid to point out some home truths and set bald facts out plainly and probably portrays an organisation that I believe is close to the real things – a body based on ideals that also has to operate in a world of hard-headed realism, politics and commercialism. __________________________________ ... and don't think I'd leave you out, M. Secrets of the Olympic Ceremonies By Myles A. Garcia 4/5 Dare I criticise GamesBids nobility? Thank God I don’t have to. This is a great tome that I’ve already described as “GamesBids, The Book”. The rare factual nitpick aside, which I’d have fun in debating over with M., he sure knows his stuff and has mined a huge array of source material to come up with one of the most readable and fascinating compilations of facts and trivia about the Olympics in general and ceremonies in particular. And if M’s not shy of stating his opinion, he backs it up well. And not to mention, that outside the Aldaver and some other specialist web sites, it’s probably the best printed compendium of facts and images of Olympic graphics and iconography, a subject too often neglected in other historical tomes, but a neverending source of fascination to a large section of the GamesBids membership at any time.
  6. Sir Rols

    e-Games in the Olympics?

  7. Sir Rols

    Your Favo(u)rite Olympic Tv Commercials

    She’s actually having tea with Arthur Tunstall, an old fogey who used to be chairman of our Commonwealth Games Federation. He’s the one who sparked off an uproar when he officially reprimanded her for draping herself in the Aboriginal flaw after winning gold at Victoria 1994. So hence, that’s the joke in the ad, the two old foes having a friendly cup of tea together.
  8. Sir Rols

    Shanghai Considers Bid To Host 2032 Olympic Games

    I hear this time they’re building facilities in the South China Sea for the sailing events.
  9. Wow! Okay, I gotta say, I agree with you 100 per cent for once. I don’t think the average Joe really has much opinion on the IOC. And that when it comers down top referendums on hosting, a mixture of NIMBYism and “who’s gonna pay for it - not me!” Is the bigger factor. On the others hand, and I’ve said this before, one of the biggest problems not just the IOC but any area of public discourse has in selling reasoned messages today is social media. Yes, the IOC does need to be more proactive in selling it’s side of the story and the benefits of responsible hosting, but that’s getting increasingly difficult to cut through in a society when any bigot with a hyper-partisan axe to grind is given an equal soapbox with they most respected media outlets and their stable of fact checkers and commitment to airing all sides of a story. Or when any tin foil hat wearing conspiracy theorist is given an equal status and voice to armies of peer-reviewed scientific journals, and where the titles “expert” or “authority” are being treated as dirty words. The IOC has made mistakes and it has its flaws, but it’s not as evil and corrupt as many of the posse who are out to tar and feather the whole organisation is wont to make out. And as has been posited here on the board often, it is possible to make positive and responsible cases and plans for hosting the games. But positive messages are hard to sell these days amidst the squarking of what passes as public discourse now.
  10. Sir Rols

    e-Games in the Olympics?

    I was just looking yesterday for some footage of the Overwatch Grand Final to give an idea of the formats. Not a lot of the venue here, though it shows you really only need a stage and a few desks or console pods. Sorta like any TV panel show studio.
  11. Sir Rols

    e-Games in the Olympics?

    Considering the current debate about esports in the LA topic, thought I’d jump-start this thread again. To start, relating to Shadowriver’s post above, the games on the roster for Jakarta 2018 are: League of Legends , Hearthstone , Starcraft II , Pro Evolution Soccer, Clash Royale , and Arena of Valor. https://esportsobserver.com/asian-games-2018-esports/ Definitely chosen for regional interest. Interestingly, no Overwatch, which has made much of the news in the west in the past few months from the growth of its league. Regarding the Overwatch League, the Grand Final was just this past week. Won by the London Spitfire team, whose team roster is entirely Korean. https://www.pcgamer.com/the-london-spitfire-win-the-overwatch-league-inaugural-grand-finals/
  12. Sir Rols

    Los Angeles 2028

    Good - i’ll give you that one. “No sounds” still doesn’t equate to “antipathy” on Paris’ part. Or “copying” - Paris was already assured of 2024 when it made its announcement. Exactly. The whole discussion is a bit cart before the horse. The IOC has gone nowhere near approving e-sports for inclusion in the games. It may be investigating it a bit more seriously now, but it’s also being very cautious. It may well happen, but equally, it may well not. For all that I, as a gamer, might be a bit more supportive of it personally, it would also face a lot of, understandable, opposition and ridicule - as evidenced by the reactions here to Paris’ proposal (by the way, I still see no evidence that Paris was always “against it”). I could show a lot of links also from the media and from IOC members totally against the idea of e-sports in the games. It will happen if the IOC come around to thinking it’s appropriate for the games - but as I’ve said, that’s an interesting and likely polarising debate to come.
  13. Sir Rols

    Los Angeles 2028

    Talk about own goals! Quaker’s post: https://www.bbc.com/sport/olympics/40875324 (9 August 2017) Your link: https://www.insidethegames.biz/articles/1067685/two-phase-selection-process-confirmed-for-new-paris-2024-sports-as-esports-told-it-cannot-be-considered (19 July 2018) For For good measure, here’s GamesBids’ page discussing (not particularly positively) Paris’ e=sports proposition last year: Meanwhile, I’m still waiting on you to clack your keyboard and post me some links on Paris always being anti-eSports and LA always proposing them.
  14. Sir Rols

    Los Angeles 2028

    You did notice that the article both Quaker and I posted about Paris suggesting e-sports was from last year. Well before the recent symposium at the Olympic Museum and AA’s Born Again enthusiasm for them. I’d be happy if you could direct me to where they said before that they were against them. And where LA had “always” been proposing them. As for the quota _ LA will be likely subject to one too. If it wants to introduce e-sports, it would have to decide what else to cut as well. if anyone is “copying” anyone, Jakarta and Hangzhou should be getting the credit.
  15. Sir Rols

    Los Angeles 2028

    Yeah, it’s quite sad that what could have/should have been a good discussion about the issue of e-sports in the Olympics gets coloured and derailed by his bitterness at Paris getting in before LA, and his conviction that the future of the gams is LA, LA, LA! And sad that when it’s linked here, the linker chooses to highlight one oblique phrase about Paris being an Olympic dinosaur, ignoring the vast bulk of the rest of the article which actually does bring up some good issues amid the “LA is the savior of Olympism” prejudicial garbage. Now the issue of e-sports and the Olympics IS an interesting discussion and debate to be had. Tha actual AA article would have been a bit more appropriate in the thread on that subject. Considering myself a keen gamer, I can actually see both sides of that debate. I’ve been observing how the Overwatch league is growing so spectacularly in prominence, as well as the rising popularity of games streaming and platforms like Twitch. Yes, there is an argument to be made that a growing generation of keen e-sports spectators and followers is fast emerging and should be acknowledged and leveraged. But as an Oly fan, well, I can well understand the opinion that the whole concept of the games is built around the best of the best of physical achievements. It’ll be interesting to see how the IOC meets the clash of physical versus virtual sports in coming years or decades. Anyway, back to AA and just to trip him up on a few particular points. Firstly, his “dinosaur” jab. It’s so ironic, that in his new-found enthusiasm for e-sports (which somehow by implications means LA, LA, LA), he ignores the fact that it’s actually been the Paris team that has made overtures about including e-sports in 2024: https://www.bbc.com/sport/olympics/41790148. Or that it’s making its games debut this year in the Jakarta Asian games and as a full medal sport in Hangzhou in 2022 (but then again, it’s always been the Asians, led by Korea, who have been leading he development of competitive spectator e-sports, rather than California). His reasoning for dissing Paris re: e-sports seems to be on the basis that it’s too late now to be included in the 2024 roster (probably true, but if Bach was really keen on it, well...). But, hey, if the shoe was on the other foot and AA had got his wish and LA had gone first, I wonder how his Born Again enthusiasm for e-sports would stack up if it was to debut at Paris 2028 rather than LA 2024???? Then there’s his, what seems to be the basis of his whole manifesto, contention that e-sports (and by his definition LA, LA, LA) is the solution to bloating of athlete numbers from games to games. Is he seriously suggesting that adding e-sports, and the extra competitors it would bring, to 2028 would actually shrink the athlete numbers? Contradictory, of course - unless he’s suggesting that e-sports is introduced in REPLACEMENT of a raft of other physical sports. In which case is seriously now championing a future where LA’s legacy to future games is to turn it into a predominantly virtual event? I might well be a gamer and on the gamers’ side, but I still don’t quite feel easy with the notion of the games in the future becoming an event more based on virtual contests taking place on a server somewhere. Maybe I’m still old fashioned deep down. Sigh. AA just seems bitter and obsessed and just prone to cherry pick any old discussion to fit into his ongoing grudge. Starting to remind me of another past old alliterative poster who twisted any fact to suit his grudge... JJ !
  16. Whatever happened to our old thread on the IOC membership, tracking who's in and who's out? Tried to find it this morning to add the following, but didn't come up on any searched. I guess it must have been accidentally deleted as well. Anyway:
  17. Okay, we're about four days to kick-off now, and the anticipation is slowly building. And so, finding myself with a bit of time on my hands, I thought I might as well go ahead and do the preliminary draw for the GamesBids 2018 World Cup sweep. So, far, however, we've only had 14 members nominating to take part (or having been nominated by others - I included Faster's nominees, and myself through Scotguy into the mix. So there's more than a few blanks in the chart. But more on that later. First, the official pots for the draw, to show that due process is being followed: And now, drumroll please.... the draw! Time to find out what you got: Happy with your team? That's up to you. Whether you are or not, there's some good news ahead. Firstly, there's plenty of good teams (in fact, most of the favourites as far as I can tell) that haven't ben drawn yet. What does that mean - well, firstly, there's plenty of spots open for anyone who still wants to enter the sweep, and plenty of good teams you'd have a chance of getting. And seeing as we have less than half the sports allocated, I'm going to do a second chance draw on the day of the kick-off. Basically, all the names (and hopefully there'll be a few new ones by then) will go back in the pot and you'll be drawn a second team. You can then choose to support either, or both of the teams you've been given. Double to fun! Anyway, celebrate or curse the luck you've had in the draw so far, and get ready for another chance in the draw come Friday. And don't forget, anybody new can still sign up. See you then. In the meantime... hmmmm, what can I do with Switzerland???????
  18. Sir Rols

    Russia 2018 GBids Sweep Draw

    You cash change your profile pic, do a signature or even change your forum name through “manage my account”.
  19. Sir Rols

    Russia 2018 GBids Sweep Draw

    Sorry for the delay - I didn't know the kick-off was last night thought I had another day to go. Anyway, here it is - the Final Russia 2018 WC draw - Hope you're happy with your selection(s). To make up the numbers, i also drafted in another wildcard - the beloved Baron PierreIV. Maybe I shoulda reconsidered if I'd known he'd get Germany instead of me. And for Dezcrafty - the rule is now you have to come up with a Belgian or South korean board identity for the tournament. Enjoy the tournament everyone, and good luck with your teams. Myself, I'll be watching about half the tournament from the Land of the Free Trumpland. Yes, swapping winter Oz for sunny California for a few weeks. I don't know which would be the worse time zone to watch it from. Enjoy everyone!
  20. Sh!t! Kick-off already! I thought it was Friday night. Okay, give me about an hour to do the second chance sweep draw. Someone’s gonna start with an automatic win for Russia and loss for Arabia. Oh well, them’s the breaks of a sweep.
  21. Sir Rols

    Russia 2018 GBids Sweep Draw

    I’ll draw your team when I do the second round picks tomorrow. Everyone, don’t forget you all get another team tomorrow! And what exactly DO you call a gay milkman?
  22. I guess it’s time to see if there’s any interest in doing a sweep. Can’t we get 32 members to put their names down for a draw? It’s not like anybody has to do anything built to post “I’m in” - and then maybe assume your new team’s identity for the duration of our trip through Mother Russia. If we do get the numbers, I’ll do a draw and then do a nice graphic chart for the tournament. Anyway, let’s se how interest goes. Just post in this thread if you wanna take part. Hopefully I can do the draw a day or two before the kick-off.
  23. Sir Rols

    Russia 2018 GamesBids Sweep

    C’mon, any more takers? At this rate, might have to give everyone two teams from the draw (assuming we can get even 16 to sign up)