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Everything posted by DrunkWithBode

  1. They've finally updated their site and gotten rid of all the Torino stuff. They've now got a pretty good three-minute preview video of their Beijing coverage. A few highlights: - All swimming finals live in primetime - Major gymnastics finals (team & individual all-around finals, it appears) live in primetime - Men's & women's marathons live in primetime - Beach Volleyball live in primetime Also, they've unveiled their broadcasting logo for the Games, which I think is pretty cool. I've been looking at the events schedule quite a bit lately to try and get an idea of what the TV coverage might be like. It looks like NBC is going to have some opportunities to air some other sports live in primetime, such as BMX cycling (which they're already hyping up in the video), indoor volleyball (which is a late night staple that we'll probably see a lot of), men's & women's triathlons, and prelims in some other sports like basketball, boxing, baseball (which the Americans actually qualified in this time ) and softball. Then, there's stuff like track & field and diving that they'll undoubtedly delay and package for primetime. And the early to mid morning hours (late afternoon to evening Beijing time) should give the cable networks opportunites for some live TV coverage. It'll be interesting to see what hours NBC wants to keep for its daytime show, though. Late morning or early afternoon? There probably isn't any point in speculating at this point, but it's still fun to do.
  2. Ha, I've always guessed that quite a few people on this board care more about ceremonies and "looks of the Games" than they care about the actual athletic competition. I guess this just confirms it.
  3. A democracy based in free speech gives Baron the right to spew all the hatred he wants, but it also gives us the right to call bullshit and let him know that we think he's dead wrong and his views sound like they're coming straight out of a backwoods Klan meeting. And I can't figure out what's funnier: the fact that Baron thinks he's an expert on the Quran despite admittedly reading little to none of it, or the fact that he thinks Islam is somehow unique in that its holy book is considered infallible by many of its followers. He calls Muslims mindless zombies, and yet he's the mindless zombie who has let the actions of a few thousand people whip him into a frenzy of hatred and condemnation of a billion people and the vaules that they hold dear.
  4. Pure ignorant, uninformed bigotry. News flash: just because you see a Muslim terrorist on TV doesn't mean that all Muslims are terrorists. I'm Roman Catholic, and virtually every Muslim immigrant that I've ever known was a good-natured, peaceful person. When a Christian fundamentalist like Timothy McVeigh, Terry Nichols, or Eric Robert Rudolph bombs a public building or an abortion clinic, or when Fred Phelps and his "family" march at funerals with their "God hates fags" signs, does that mean that their beliefs are indicative of Christianity as a whole? Absolutely not. Most people are intelligent enough not to label one billion people by the actions of a few thousand radicals, but unfortunately, you don't get it. Also, to a certain extent, ALL religions teach their followers not to question certain policies and beliefs. It's called blind faith, and virtually every religion on the planet asks its followers for it in some form or another.
  5. I'll watch and enjoy the Games as much as anyone, but with their horrible human rights record, there's no way that Beijing should have ever been elected to host. It's too bad that the IOC doesn't have any social conscience. They are basically a bunch of high-priced prostitutes: throw the most money at us (facilities or bribes; your choice), and we'll hop in bed with you, no questions asked. They sell their games to the highest bidder, don't spend a dime of their own money, and then more often than not move on leaving little more than a debt. It looked like things were changing when L.A. basically saved their asses without building a bunch of white elephants and then Seoul and Barcelona ran efficient, somewhat less expensive Games, but the IOC has reverted right back to their extravagant whoring ways, and we've already begun seeing Montreal-like spending disasters. But the IOC doesn't care; the only thing they see is money.
  6. Exactly. They usually seem rushed and poorly made, and as you mentioned, the fact that a bunch of the events are based on rapidly tapping the same button over and over just doesn't make for an enjoyable game.
  7. There will almost certainly be an official Beijing '08 video game. It'll certainly be the consoles, and I'd imagine it'll also be on the PC. I haven't heard anything official, but it'll likely be in stores a few months into 2008.
  8. The NFL preseason game (Patriots vs. Seahawks) will he played at Workers Stadium, and not at the Bird's Nest. It'll be on August 8th, 2007, to kick off the one year countdown to the Olympic Games.
  9. That's pretty incorrect. Figure skating is the most popular Olympic sport in the US, but it isn't close to any of the major sports. It gets very high Olympic ratings, but that's mostly due to the fact that it is rarely on TV. Viewers-wise, I'd probably rank them like this: 1. American Football 2. Baseball 3. Basketball 4. NASCAR 5. Hockey 6. Golf 7. Figure Skating 8. Soccer 9. Gymnastics 10. Swimming 11. Track & field 12. Beach volleyball I think the main reason why NBC did not aggressively go after daytime athletics is because they didn't want to get too greedy and start asking the IOC to change the entire schedule to fit American viewing. They probably knew that they could only get away with getting a couple of sports' schedules shifted, so they went for sports that (1) are popular in the US, and (2) would not be hurt by the hot temperatures during the day. Indoor sports like swimming & gymnastics were perfect.
  10. NBC can afford to air the game live because they don't need people to watch it. Preseason games are preseason games, and they're met with relative indifference. On the other hand, NBC paid about a billion dollars for the Olympics, so they need to match the biggest events with the biggest anticipated viewer hours (primetime). Count me ago those that would like to see live events, though. It's too bad that the Triplecast bombed so badly in '92 (largely due to the outrageous price).
  11. Are they going to be similar to the '04 medals? I hope that the IOC doesn't get in the habit of letting hosts drastically change the summer medals, much like they do with the winter medals. It's not a big deal, but I still kind of wish that they didn't change the design for the Athens medals.
  12. I think I'm a little bit closer to your opinion on this than baron's, but let's be honest: television runs sports nowadays. The IOC counts very heavily on broadcaster money, so naturally, they have to look out for broadcaster interest. Billions of dollars are at stake here. I agree that the IOC is making a controversial decision here, and that they should probably protect the interests of the BOOC and the athletes first. However, baron does make a pretty good point when he says that the athletes have two years to prepare for this. It's not like they can't prepare and adjust for this. I don't think it'll affect the swimmers very much at all. My main question is, will attendance suffer at late morning venues? I'm inclined to think that it won't. This isn't Seoul or Turin; it's a city with over 15 million people, in a country where this is being treated as a major historical and cultural event. They'll do what it takes to fill the stands. I'm thinking that everyone will be able to adjust just fine.
  13. Who would be hurt more by an all athlete boycott? The IOC or the athletes themselves? The bottom line is that like all sporting events, the Olympics are indeed primarily about the athletes. If the Olympic Games ceased to be tomorrow, the financial situations of these athletes wouldn't change very much at all; some very rich, some very poor. The IOC, however, would be up ****'s creek. NBC's gotta drop this thing. They can probably still get some basketball and some other events in primetime without much fuss, but this isn't worth alienating the entire world.
  14. So, is this little guy/gal going to take the place of the five friendlies? I miss the days when Olympic mascots were just one simple animal. Wait, this is the Paralympic mascot? I'd say the Paralympians are getting the better end of the deal.
  15. Does anyone have any favorite moments from the Games of the XXVIIIth Olympiad? Some of mine are: Favorite Moments: 4. Paul Hamm wins the men's all-around- I actually knew the outcome in advance of the tape-delayed NBC broadcast, but I still found myself in disbelief while watching it. I knew that Hamm won, but I didn't know any of the particulars of how he did it. And when he fell on the vault, I was seriously questioning whether or not I had read the results correctly; I couldn't imagine any way that he could have come back and medaled, much less won gold. But with the help of some less than clutch performances by the guys ahead of him, and a near-flawless high bar routine, he did it. And there was also that thing with the scoring error. But who cares, that was our revenge for South Korea screwing Roy Jones back in '88. 3. Swimming events in general- as always, swimming was extremely exciting and competitive across the board. And of course, Michael Phelps' six golds were a highlight, especially considering how he's a Maryland native and his mother was once one of my teachers in middle school. Plus, I really liked the venue, and I firmly believe that the lack of a roof was a blessing in disguise. It might be a hinderance for the backstrokers, but an outdoor swimming venue is much more aesthetically pleasing than a sterile, indoor venue. 2. Women's 100m hurdles- the prohibitive favorite, Perdita Felicien, wipes out on the very first hurdle and Joanna Hayes runs a somewhat sloppy race (how many hurdles did she clip?), and still wins in world record time. This was one of those true "thrill of victory, agony of defeat" moments where you see two athletes at complete opposite ends of the emotional spectrum. As good as you felt for Hayes, you had to feel just as bad for Felicien, who sat dejectedly on the track, staring blankly with her back to the finish line for what seemed like an eternity. 1. Fani Halkia wins the women's 400m hurdles- every Olympics has that one great home-grown athlete whose victory and ensuing celebration becomes the stuff of legend (Cathy Freeman, Michael Johnson, etc.), and it's especially poignant when it comes from a host country that doesn't exactly win a lot of gold medals. To me, this was that moment from the 2004 Games. To see her come out of that second curve with a huge lead and to hear the crowd build louder and louder before finally reaching a crescendo as she crossed the finish line is one of the more powerful sports moments I've ever watched. Least favorite moments: Kostas Kenteris disappears, idiot defrocked priest interrupts the men's marathon, and any USA basketball game other than the wins over Spain and Lithuania. Overall, the Games were outstanding. As much as we whine about construction delays, white elephants, transportation difficulties, sparse attendance (which I did find very disappointing), etc., the athletes always end up coming to the forefront and being the true, overwhelming highlight of any Olympics.
  16. I have a question: was there a virus or some sort of spyware infecting the forums? A few days ago (Sunday, I think), I tried to access the forums and had spyware involuntarily installed onto my computer. I was able to get rid of it, attempted to access the site a second time, and once again, the same spyware was put onto my computer. I got rid of it, waited a few days, and then decided to roll the dice today, and it looks like the problem no longer exists.
  17. I'd like to see that too, but I think NBC is terrified of the possible consequences if it backfires. There's almost no question that airing the events live in the morning would put a noticable dent in their primetime ratings, and that's what they're afraid of. And while it would also create an increase in viewership and ad revenue during those live morning broadcasts, those increases would likely not make up for the decrease in night-time viewership. It's all about money to them, and they believe that they'll make more money by catering to the captive audiences who sit in front of their TVs at night, and not to the people who watch with the sound off at work or at the gym during the day. I've been defending NBC's line of reasoning, but I agree that they're going to have to make a change some time in the near future. Since 1992, they've been bidding against themselves and pouring too much money into the IOC, and now they're finding that their jobs are being made much harder by the internet age. Hopefully, Dick Ebersol will retire or get fired some time soon and another network will be able to scoop up the Olympics for a lower price, and then give it the appropriate coverage. That's what I think it'll take before we see any drastic change in Olympic broadcasting in this country. NBC is too set in their ways, and with the ridiculous amounts that they've paid for rights, they have no choice but to focus entirely on primetime ratings. Unfortunately, they have the broadcasting rights through at least 2016.
  18. NBC won't air events live and then re-air them in primetime, because they feel that this would decrease their primetime ratings (and they're probably right). There are trade-offs that go on. They aren't as drastic as late morning swim finals, but they certainly do happen. One famous case was in 1996, where the women's team gymnastics final, probably one of the 10 most famous moments in US Olympic history, started at 5 or 6 PM Atlanta time and was seen throughout the US on primetime tape delay. This was specifically done so that it could be seen at a reasonable hour in Europe. If NBC had their way, it would've started at 8 or 9 PM. There is no slippery slope here; this will NOT lead to a day when NBC will be asking for 2 AM track & field finals in London. If you honestly think that would happen, you're kidding yourself. Other than a North American Olympics, an Olympics in the Far East is the best possible chance that NBC would get for live primetime coverage, and they're similar trying to take advantage of the opportunity. They know that live primetime coverage is impossible during a European Olympics, and that's why they've never sought it.
  19. The problem here isn't that Americans are totally unwilling to tune in during odds hours. The problem is that NBC believes if they let viewers watch major events at odd hours, then those viewers won't tune back in to re-watch them in primetime. NBC doesn't care how many people tune in at 8 AM or 1 PM; their only concern is primetime 7:30 to midnight TV ratings. And to a certain extent, they're right. As much as I love the Olympics, if I've seen all the big events already, I'm not going to be quite as anxious to turn my TV on later that night to watch it all over again. As it is now, I ALWAYS make sure to be in front of my TV at 7:30, because I'm watching these events for the very first time. If I had already seen them, I'd still watch on most nights, but I wouldn't have the same type of "The Olympics are on, I'm not leaving the house" mentality. Sports is a big business in the US. We saw the same thing with the World Series in baseball a few decades ago. Until the early 70's, EVERY World Series game was during the day. Then, major league baseball started playing most of the games at night for bigger TV ratings. And since 1985, every single World Series game has been at night. With network sports broadcasting being such a big business, the networks are all but forced to air everything at night when the audiences are largest. Just to make things clear, I think that the IOC should say no to NBC for the athletes' sake. But from a pure broadcasting standpoint, with all of the money that NBC pays (even though they continually overbid for the Games without even knowing the host), they deserve to have a bone or two thrown their way every once in a while.
  20. The simple answer is that NBC pays nearly a billion dollars for each Olympics (far more than any other country in the world), and the only way for them to recoup the costs is to rake in big, big dollars in advertising revenue. Knowing that audiences are much larger at night, advertisers don't pay nearly as much money to advertise during the day. In other words, for NBC, it's all about promising advertisers that they can get as many primetime viewers as possible. The way to do this, of course, is to hold the major events until primetime. If people know the outcome but haven't actually seen the event, many of them will tune in. If people know the outcome because they have already seen the event, not nearly as many will tune in during primetime. I don't like it, but it's a business model that works pretty well for NBC. The World Cup, on the other hand is always shown live here. This year's games were all live, shown in the late morning and early afternoon, and 2002's games were also shown live in the middle of the night (starting at 2 AM EST). The networks involved (ESPN and ABC) can air the World Cup live because they pay a mere fraction of what NBC pays for the Olympics.
  21. There's a twelve hour time difference, and NBC typically doesn't air the biggest events until after 10 PM EST. So, we're probably talking about 10 or 11 AM starts for these races in Beijing. Realistically, how is this going to affect attendance? I hate to sound ignorant on the subject, but how free would Beijingers be to attend daytime weekday events if they had enough money to do so? In a country of over a billion people, where this is clearly one of *the* most important and anticipated events in the country's modern history, is attendance really going to suffer?
  22. That's not a very good comparison. Staging a final in the late morning hours (10 or 11 AM) is a heck of a lot more feasable than staging a final at two or three in the morning. NBC was in such a situation with Athens and Barcelona, but they wouldn't have dared ask for live finals at 2 or 3 AM European time. I don't think it's such an incredible travesty that swimmers might be asked to swim at 10 or 11 in the morning. However, I do agree with you that it would probably be best if NBC dropped this. I don't really care about the complaints of Australian or European viewers (we've been dealing with tape delay in the US for years), but if it is going to cause this much of an uproar within the swimming community, then it shouldn't be done. Period. There are plenty of sports that NBC could air in primetime without significantly altering the schedule (rowing, diving, basketball, maybe gymnastics). And I don't think that live swimming will boost their ratings all that much.
  23. In honor of the eunuchs buried at the site, they're going to have all of the competitors shoot blanks instead of actual ammunition.
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