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Survey Of The Beijing Olympics

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My review of the games. No one will every top Beijing 2008. Any complains about Human rights or issues that are negatives are just nit picking sour grapes on the part of people jealous that a China can do this better then anyone has before and will ever.

Australian Games experts who have guided this to a degree have some great work ahead of them from other places desiring to replicate Beijing or the best parts of it. I believe Australian Games experts will have brand new competitors in the Chinese themselves. Only in a Dictatorship can you have games like these but I think in the case of China even if it had the democratic freedoms enjoyed in the west they would still pull it off in the same way. The money spent on the games every society will complain about but that is not as acute when you have a country hosting for the first time as a coming out party or we have arrived party.

Beijing sets the standard others can hope to meet but basically you will only see those thing met inside the athletes village in future games and those are invisible to the general public. There will never be another Birds Nest stadium which had incredible innovations in design that provided the ultimate in tools for the opening and closing ceremonies. Looking at the Athens 2004 opening ceremonies footage it looks incredibly outdated as if it was 20 years ago compared with Beijing a mere 4 years later. Many of the Show Technologies employed in Beijing were available to Athens 2004 but some how they were not employed or can't compare in the Framed impact Beijing had.

Beijing Breaks the myth that a developing country cannot do the Olympics and this will speed the process to get to South America, A Muslim State and Africa.

While Coca Cola says they will cut back sponsorship for the olympics in regards to 2012 and Kodak , Lenovo , Manulife, Johnson and Johnson all look to exiting olympic sponsorship for London it goes to show that Multinational corporations will spend hugely on emerging markets with large populations not places that are mature markets that you have all the market share and goodwill you will possibly get. This may make for two things for the election of 2016. A. a mad dash to the United States and Chicago to boost sponsorship from America once again or B. go to Rio for a Market place emerging once again , A market place not visited with the Olympics and on the top ten most populated countries in the world like Beijing was before being awarded the games. America, Japan and Spain do not offer the Olympics a frontier which Brazil will and Beijing proved can pay off greatly.

Considering China is the Largest Market by population and growth look to the Top Sponsors desire to spend in other market places with growth potential. in the 112 years of the games the Olympics has now only gone to 4 of the top ten most populated countries in the world. The last six are in the near future and the list is

# China - 1,313,973,713

# India - 1,095,351,995

# United States - 298,444,215 (as of Nov. 2006 - 300,176,035)

# Indonesia - 245,452,739

# Brazil - 188,078,227

# Pakistan - 165,803,560

# Bangladesh - 147,365,352

# Russia - 142,893,540

# Nigeria - 131,859,731

# Japan - 127,463,611

The misjudgment of London 2012 thinking that they would possibly get the sponsorship value of a China is summed up by a marketing expert interviewed in the Independent.

Lesa Ukman, chairman of IEG, a US sponsorship consultancy in the WPP group said, "London is looking at numbers that are impossible to justify. The price of the Games is going through the roof, based not on the value potential that is extractable but on the committee's ideas of what can be charged - which has nothing to do with what you can get as a return. It is absurd".

London pursuing even trying to compete with Beijing is folly but also they have really misjudged that they can actually transform the east end without gutting their domestic economy.

London 2012 will leave little for other events after it as every corporate cupboard will be excessed to make up for the absence of the Beijing Level Sponsorship London made it's budget on . This might have as far reaching effect as to hinder a World cup in 2018 but certainly the Glasgow 2014 efforts.

Jim jones

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No one will every top Beijing 2008.

Any complains about Human rights or issues that are negatives are just nit picking sour grapes on the part of people jealous that a China can do this better then anyone has before and will ever.

I think this is excessive. I can't imagine in 20 years people will still be saying that Beijing still cannot be 'topped'.

Looking at the Athens 2004 opening ceremonies footage it looks incredibly outdated as if it was 20 years ago compared with Beijing a mere 4 years later. Many of the Show Technologies employed in Beijing were available to Athens 2004 but some how they were not employed or can't compare in the Framed impact Beijing had.

I couldn't agree less. For me, Athens still looks timeless namely because the technology was not the glorified epicentre of the ceremony. For example, a giant marble head rising out of a lake in a stadium is an extraordinary technological feat, but visually it appeared like a very minimilistic sequence, the way the director had intended. Don't get me wrong, I thought Beijing OC was brilliant, but if you want dated, see Sydney 2000, the largest leap between ceremonies was Sydney-Athens, not Athens-Beijing.

Beijing Breaks the myth that a developing country cannot do the Olympics and this will speed the process to get to South America, A Muslim State and Africa.

I think you are missing the point. China, as well as being a developing country, is also at the same time, and economic superpower. 48 billion dollars will buy you a lot of Olympics in a country like China, especially when we compare it to the 11 billion that Greece spent. When we start playing with this kind of money, even sponsors like Coca-Cola, MacDonalds and Kodak begin to be dwarfed in the financial scale of these games. So the question really is not will anyone top Beijing but which city will be prepared to spend this amount of money on hosting an Olympic Games.

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I am glad that the Chinese enjoyed the Games and they could be proud of it, but I found it a pitty, that you could get the impression, that the Chinese audience supported the Chinese athletes, only

I have read in several reports that the Chinese fans turn out to be far more sporting. A Singaporean fan cheering in the stands noted how the Chinese gamely joined in to cheer for Singapore when he invited them to in a Table Tennis match against the Koreans. Why should the Chinese do that, when they are only interested to see their team play in the next game?

It should also be noted that there were many Chinese fans in the birds' nests during the athletic events (and not just when Liu Xiang was running/hopping/limping), a surprise considering the Chinese hardly feature or do well in the sport.

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I do not buy for a minute that all of the Chinese gymnasts were of age. A new form of cheating appears to have come out of these games, in addition to doping.

Which may actually become a bigger problem when the Youth Olympics begins in 2010. Are we going to see alot debates on just whether an athlete is between 14 and 18 each time someone accomplishes something unimaginable?

Also, I recon the 16-year-old age limit will still apply for gymnastics in the YOG? This means only those aged 16 to 18 need apply?

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Overall - I believe these Games will be looked back at as a great success. The venues were spectacular, no horror stories about transportation/organization and the athletic achievements were incredible. The Beijing Games are worth being remembered as one of the greatest ever - but in the end nowhere near the success of some other of the recent Games.

Some problems - the empty seat issue was not something I expected at THESE Games. The vagariess of the weather and the smog of the early days of the Games. The reports of lack of a games atmosphere outside the venues and throughout the city. The lack of much (or any) social progress that was promised in preparation for these Games.

But in the end, these Games - organized and planned within an inch of their life - couldn't achieve the one thing that you cant plan for.

Magic.

Since I have been following the Games (1976 - on), I have seen successful Games, unsuccessful Games, middle of the road Games - but I have only seen 3 Games that I would say were truly magical. Los Angeles - 1984, Lillehammer - 1994, and Sydney 2000.

In each instance - it was not (just) the successful organization of the Games, but instead moments in time when a city and a nation fell in love with their Olympic Games and created an almost once in a lifetime synergy with the athletes to create a magical fortnight.

Again, this isn't something that you can plan for. It's just somthing that you have to let happen.

I get the feeling that if the government of the People's Republic of China would have had a little more faith in the actual People of China - there could have been a little bit of this magic.

Not to say these Games were unsuccessful - they rank among the best for sure (a 4 star experience). But they could have been more.

So the way I see it since 76 -

Sydney 2000

Los Angeles 1984

Beijing 2008

Barcelona 1992

Athens 2004

Seoul 1988

Atlanta 1996

Montreal 1976

Moscow 1980

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Looking at the Athens 2004 opening ceremonies footage it looks incredibly outdated as if it was 20 years ago compared with Beijing a mere 4 years later. Many of the Show Technologies employed in Beijing were available to Athens 2004 but some how they were not employed or can't compare in the Framed impact Beijing had.

Jim jones

U r absolutely DEAD ON on this one. Lexus is wrong, as always.

For me, Athens put on those great tricks ONLY for the sake of saying: hey look, we are able to pull off some great stage tricks!! But really, they were NOT woven well into the thread of a "Welcome Home" Games. I mean, I've heard of the Cyclades maybe once or twice in my life -- and I had loads of subjects on classical Greece and ancient Rome in school -- so to use this little-known myth to create a spectacular effect was kinda contrived and really forced.

Here is a transcript of a crucial creative meeting in late May 2004 between Papiannou and the Jack Morton people:

Jack Morton Rep: Dmitris, I've got a headache thinking of new ideas for you...

DMITRIS P: Oh, stop copping out on me... We need some REALLY original ideas...what did you say? :blink: headache??

Jack Morton Rep: Please...like my head is splitting into a million pieces!!

DMITIRS P: That's it!! Let's create a 'headache' effect!! A head...a BRAIN splitting up into a million pieces like shrapel!!

Jack Morton Rep: ...and...and... how are you going to justify this 'effect' as part of an Opening Ceremony?

DMITRIS P: Let's make it some part of some legend...

Jack Morton Rep: ...and where do we find this legend???

DMITRIS P: Why, on Wikipedia!! I'll have Elena (the production assistant) get into Wikipedia right now and create this legend!!!

Bingo!! (just kidding, savas! ;) )

Very creative, I say!! :lol::lol:

Also, on learning too that Athens had a $90 mil Ceremonies budget whereas Beijing's was in the $150 mil range, I didn't see much of $90 mil worth of production values in Athens' show. I think Athens got taken greatly by (the same) Jack Morton WW in that probably 1/4th to 1/3rd of the $90 mil Athenian budget, so, some $25 - 30 mil, went into Jack Morton's accounts vs. (my guess) of some $7-8 mil consultancy fees for Beijing's foreign show partners -- rather than into tangible production values. And so many people get taken by the minimalist approach...oh, it's unique, it's different... :rolleyes::rolleyes:

Edited by baron-pierreIV

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I am glad that the Chinese enjoyed the Games and they could be proud of it, but I found it a pitty, that you could get the impression, that the Chinese audience supported the Chinese athletes, only

Sitting on my couch, it struck me how this wasn't the case at all! I'd even go as far and say that it bled through my television in some instances. Yes, the Chinese cheered louder for their own athletes, but they did showed great admiration for others and for the whole occasion in general. Jonathan Horton's score on the High Bar getting booed by the crowd because they thought it should be higher (even if that meant that their own Chinese gymnast would get knocked out of the Gold medal position) would be the perfect example. This could have really shined through in everything and made for something truly special if, as said, the Chinese government had put more faith into its own people.

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I think these Olympics really exceeded my expectations. The world expected China to put on an amazing show, and they absolutely did. The venues were unique and architecturally innovative. The ceremonies were unique as well. Of course, you never truly can predict what will happen in the competition but with Phelps, Bolt, etc., it definitely exceeded expectations. The Chinese team showed their force, just like they wanted to.

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Sitting on my couch, it struck me how this wasn't the case at all! I'd even go as far and say that it bled through my television in some instances. Yes, the Chinese cheered louder for their own athletes, but they did showed great admiration for others and for the whole occasion in general. Jonathan Horton's score on the High Bar getting booed by the crowd because they thought it should be higher (even if that meant that their own Chinese gymnast would get knocked out of the Gold medal position) would be the perfect example. This could have really shined through in everything and made for something truly special if, as said, the Chinese government had put more faith into its own people.

Second to their own teams, they cheered loudly for Shawn Johnson and the US Women's Indoor Volleyball teams because their coaches were ex-Beijing residents. The US Women's coach is the legendary volleyball player Lang Ping (or "Iron Hammer" as she was called in her heyday) who actually was instrumental in defeating the US Women's team in Los Angeles for the Gold in 1984, and 24 years later, here she was, coaching and crying for the US team -- even against her own China team!!

And I think 3 or 4 of the US Table Tennis team were rejects from China's ping-pong program but had migrated tothe US; so I believe they got a great reception too from the crowds.

It's incredible how these stories turn out!!

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U r absolutely DEAD ON on this one. Lexus is wrong, as always.

For me, Athens put on those great tricks ONLY for the sake of saying: hey look, we are able to pull off some great stage tricks!! But really, they were NOT woven well into the thread of a "Welcome Home" Games. I mean, I've heard of the Cyclades maybe once or twice in my life -- and I had loads of subjects on classical Greece and ancient Rome in school -- so to use this little-known myth to create a spectacular effect was kinda contrived and really forced.

Here is a transcript of a crucial creative meeting in late May 2004 between Papiannou and the Jack Morton people:

Jack Morton Rep: Dmitris, I've got a headache thinking of new ideas for you...

DMITRIS P: Oh, stop copping out on me... We need some REALLY original ideas...what did you say? :blink: headache??

Jack Morton Rep: Please...like my head is splitting into a million pieces!!

DMITIRS P: That's it!! Let's create a 'headache' effect!! A head...a BRAIN splitting up into a million pieces like shrapel!!

Jack Morton Rep: ...and...and... how are you going to justify this 'effect' as part of an Opening Ceremony?

DMITRIS P: Let's make it some part of some legend...

Jack Morton Rep: ...and where do we find this legend???

DMITRIS P: Why, on Wikipedia!! I'll have Elena (the production assistant) get into Wikipedia right now and create this legend!!!

Bingo!! (just kidding, savas! ;) )

Very creative, I say!! :lol::lol:

Also, on learning too that Athens had a $90 mil Ceremonies budget whereas Beijing's was in the $150 mil range, I didn't see much of $90 mil worth of production values in Athens' show. I think Athens got taken greatly by (the same) Jack Morton WW in that probably 1/4th to 1/3rd of the $90 mil Athenian budget, so, some $25 - 30 mil, went into Jack Morton's accounts vs. (my guess) of some $7-8 mil consultancy fees for Beijing's foreign show partners -- rather than into tangible production values. And so many people get taken by the minimalist approach...oh, it's unique, it's different... :rolleyes::rolleyes:

18,578 posts and still just textual banter to me. Relax, in a few days I'll be gone, living my life, and I'll leave you to yours - posting on GB.

Now, I don't know about you, but I don't think 90 million dollars is a small and casual difference in budget, we are talking about almost double (not to mention the fact that you get a lot more RNB for your dollar, cheap labor etc). Stop talking crap again.

I am surely wasting my time here, but since it is the season and it may be another 4 years since I post, I will entertain you Baron, I am in the mood.

Wasting my time because you were never a fan of the Athens OC. Perhaps the Greek forumers drove you to it, who knows. The only thing that I felt was contrived about Athens was the assumption that the general American audience would understand a ceremony with any depth to it (so you can imagine what a lake with measurable depth did to their poor two-dimensional brains). I watched the NBC coverage of Athens OC and you were really let down by your commentary - perhaps if the commentators took out a dictionary to understand the artistic brief Papaioannou had given, I wouldn't be posting here. If you feel that OC shouldn't need explanations, see my final comments.

Contrived? My favourite segment in Athens (and any ceremony for that matter) was the formation of the milky way, with a woman, pregnant, stomach aglow, staring up at the formation of a double-helix. There was nothing nationalistic in this for me, just a core tribute to all humanity, somethings that binds us all (and unfortunately even me to you). Now is this felt forced to you, I challenge your mind to have 'pushed' this one out. As for obscure Cycladic figures, the first known representation of the human form is as well recognised in Greece as MacDonalds is to you. Once again it was ignorant of us to assume you would know this, it was ignorant of us to assume that the commentary would explain it and it was ignorant of us to assume that you would care.

Hence i am not suprised you didn't like Athens because for all your pseudo-intellectual self-proclaimed pundit banter, you're really just a couch potato desperate for visual orgasm without really having to use your brain. What's worse is that Beijing followed the same artistic principles that Athens adopted (which is why I loved it) and yet you absolutely hate one but love the other. Slightly hypocritical if you ask me.

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Amazing to see all those threads in which that Athens debate appears... :rolleyes:

Now back to the original topic:

All in all, I look back at the Games with very mixed emotions.

On the one hand, I found the athletes' performances great as usual. All those emotions and the plain joy of being able to watch more than a dozen of different sports on only one day! Then, there was the great opening ceremony and the fine venues (even the Birds Nest grew on me, especially with the nice cauldron). And there was the great Chinese audience with its love for cheering and its support also of foreign athletes.

But on the other hand, there was that regime, the organising committee and the IOC which still tried to fool the world even during the Games. For example, there was the lack of the originally promised "demonstration parks" and the arrogance of that BOCOG guy telling the foreign journalists that they still haven't understood China (saying that even to correspondents who live in China for a long time). Jacques Rogge's brown-nosing towards the regime and silence about the human rights breaches also during the Games was plainly outrageous.

Also, the Games lacked -- even despite the enthusiasm of the audience -- that special, festive atmosphere. That is probably due to the political restrictions as well or due to the fact that everything seemed to be thoroughly planned at these Games (maybe besides Liu Xiang's failure to compete), but maybe also a result of that marketing hype around the Olympic Games in general. It makes the Games somehow exchangeable and less special.

In the end, those were good Games, but they were not better than Athens' and far away from reaching Sydney's level. Even if the Chinese members (if there are any still present at all) take that for Western arrogance once more: But nothing beats Olympic Games in an atmosphere of liberty (including human rights, especially freedom of speech, for the population in the host country and unrestricted working conditions for the media) in a democratic country.

Of all the Games I intensely witnessed, I would rank Beijing on third position (together with Athens) behind Sydney and Salt Lake and ahead of Torino.

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1) Barcelona, 2) Beijing, 3) Sydney/Athens.

Beijing above Sydney? That's a massive call to make, and one I can't agree with.

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Beijing above Sydney? That's a massive call to make, and one I can't agree with.

1) Sydney (imho the yardstick for London, despite the media inevitibly comparing our efforts to what's just been)

2) Beijing (fabulous performance by team GB, but way behind Sydney in terms of making me smile otherwise)

3) Athens (would be closer but Team GB's performance had an influence on me putting Beijing at #2)

4) Atlanta (the first Olympics I really remeber, so will always be special)

All good games, and ranking them is perhaps a bit of an over-simplistic thing to do.

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Beijing above Sydney? That's a massive call to make, and one I can't agree with.

Sorry I've disappointed you arwebb. ;)

Third place is okay - I do have memories of seven Summer Games - although Los Angeles 1984 is limited to the Opening Ceremony and Zola Budd.

I realise Sydney was an incredible Games, however, it was the one I watched the least. In the autumn of 2000 I was in the middle of moving house in Paris - believe me; moving from one apartment to another in France involves a lot of bureaucracy - it left me with very little time to watch anything. Also, and sorry to mention it, but, Atlanta had left me quite dissolutioned and I suppose Sydney suffered as a result.

Sydney only places so high on my ranking due to knowledge I've gained post the Games - I wrote an MA thesis on the legacy aspects of hosting the Olympics a couple of years ago and Sydney came out quite well in most areas of my research.

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It's not a question of disappointing anybody as far as I'm concerned. On atmosphere alone, Sydney is way ahead of anything Beijing could provide.

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U r absolutely DEAD ON on this one. Lexus is wrong, as always.

For me, Athens put on those great tricks ONLY for the sake of saying: hey look, we are able to pull off some great stage tricks!! But really, they were NOT woven well into the thread of a "Welcome Home" Games. I mean, I've heard of the Cyclades maybe once or twice in my life -- and I had loads of subjects on classical Greece and ancient Rome in school -- so to use this little-known myth to create a spectacular effect was kinda contrived and really forced.

Here is a transcript of a crucial creative meeting in late May 2004 between Papiannou and the Jack Morton people:

Jack Morton Rep: Dmitris, I've got a headache thinking of new ideas for you...

DMITRIS P: Oh, stop copping out on me... We need some REALLY original ideas...what did you say? :blink: headache??

Jack Morton Rep: Please...like my head is splitting into a million pieces!!

DMITIRS P: That's it!! Let's create a 'headache' effect!! A head...a BRAIN splitting up into a million pieces like shrapel!!

Jack Morton Rep: ...and...and... how are you going to justify this 'effect' as part of an Opening Ceremony?

DMITRIS P: Let's make it some part of some legend...

Jack Morton Rep: ...and where do we find this legend???

DMITRIS P: Why, on Wikipedia!! I'll have Elena (the production assistant) get into Wikipedia right now and create this legend!!!

Bingo!! (just kidding, savas! ;) )

Very creative, I say!! :lol::lol:

Also, on learning too that Athens had a $90 mil Ceremonies budget whereas Beijing's was in the $150 mil range, I didn't see much of $90 mil worth of production values in Athens' show. I think Athens got taken greatly by (the same) Jack Morton WW in that probably 1/4th to 1/3rd of the $90 mil Athenian budget, so, some $25 - 30 mil, went into Jack Morton's accounts vs. (my guess) of some $7-8 mil consultancy fees for Beijing's foreign show partners -- rather than into tangible production values. And so many people get taken by the minimalist approach...oh, it's unique, it's different... :rolleyes::rolleyes:

sorry - have you farted? there's a definite whiff of bull-**** coming from you!

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18,578 posts and still just textual banter to me. Relax, in a few days I'll be gone, living my life, and I'll leave you to yours - posting on GB.

Now, I don't know about you, but I don't think 90 million dollars is a small and casual difference in budget, we are talking about almost double (not to mention the fact that you get a lot more RNB for your dollar, cheap labor etc). Stop talking crap again.

I am surely wasting my time here, but since it is the season and it may be another 4 years since I post, I will entertain you Baron, I am in the mood.

Wasting my time because you were never a fan of the Athens OC. Perhaps the Greek forumers drove you to it, who knows. The only thing that I felt was contrived about Athens was the assumption that the general American audience would understand a ceremony with any depth to it (so you can imagine what a lake with measurable depth did to their poor two-dimensional brains). I watched the NBC coverage of Athens OC and you were really let down by your commentary - perhaps if the commentators took out a dictionary to understand the artistic brief Papaioannou had given, I wouldn't be posting here. If you feel that OC shouldn't need explanations, see my final comments.

Contrived? My favourite segment in Athens (and any ceremony for that matter) was the formation of the milky way, with a woman, pregnant, stomach aglow, staring up at the formation of a double-helix. There was nothing nationalistic in this for me, just a core tribute to all humanity, somethings that binds us all (and unfortunately even me to you). Now is this felt forced to you, I challenge your mind to have 'pushed' this one out. As for obscure Cycladic figures, the first known representation of the human form is as well recognised in Greece as MacDonalds is to you. Once again it was ignorant of us to assume you would know this, it was ignorant of us to assume that the commentary would explain it and it was ignorant of us to assume that you would care.

Hence i am not suprised you didn't like Athens because for all your pseudo-intellectual self-proclaimed pundit banter, you're really just a couch potato desperate for visual orgasm without really having to use your brain. What's worse is that Beijing followed the same artistic principles that Athens adopted (which is why I loved it) and yet you absolutely hate one but love the other. Slightly hypocritical if you ask me.

bravo !

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