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China Joins Protests Against Morning Finals


Stu
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CHINA'S national television broadcaster, CCTV, has told the International Olympic Committee it was shocked by proposed changes to the Beijing Games finals times that apparently favor the giant US broadcaster NBC over Chinese viewers. The proposed changes affect mainly the swimming and gymnastics finals. CCTV said it learned of the changes only a few days before a conference of world Olympic broadcasters in Beijing last month. In an individual meeting with Olympic chiefs at the conference, CCTV said swimming and gymnastics are especially important to the Chinese people and it was shocked to find the finals were being scheduled in the mornings instead of the traditional 6pm to 11pm timeslots. CCTV also asked for synchronized diving to be moved to an evening session.

Shanghai Daily has obtained a summary of comments made by broadcasters in individual meetings with IOC representatives and a transcript of comments made in the plenary session of the Beijing meeting. The schedule changes, which have been widely reported to have been proposed by the IOC at the behest of NBC, have brought strong protests from swimmers, swimming officials and broadcasters in the Asia-Pacific region, Europe and Africa.

Even the Arab States Broadcasting Union told the IOC at an individual meeting in Beijing that it did not support the changes and was not happy with the lack of compromise and consultation. It said Arab broadcasters have spent many years building and creating a profile for swimming and gymnastics for the Olympic Games coverage. "They now believe they will lose this very important audience," the ASBU said. "The precedent that would be set by the Beijing Olympic Games is bad, and the ASBU believes it could affect their contracts for the London Olympic Games (in 2012)."

South Africa's national broadcaster, SABC, also expressed concern that efforts to build the popularity of swimming and gymnastics would be wasted. With the proposed schedule changes, "the promise to the audience will be lost," possibly never to be regained, the South African broadcaster said. Broadcasters from South America, who share the US timezone, supported the changes, but the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, while conceding that the proposed schedule for swimming and gymnastics would be an advantage this time, expressed fears for the future. If the Beijing Games created a precedent, it could have disastrous effects - particularly for Canada's favorite sports in the Winter Olympics, CBC said.

Australia's Seven Network said the proposed changes could adversely impact 5.6 billion viewers around the world, including those in China. The general manager of Beijing Olympic Broadcasting, Manolo Romero, who chaired the plenary session, said the concerns of broadcasters would be passed on to the IOC executive committee before it finalized the schedule.

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Shheeeshhh .... Just a question

Did they protest over this in Seoul and Tokyo ?

No matter if, when and where they protested.

OG exist for athlets mainly, not for TV presidents and their bank incomes.

For LA '84 opening Cerimony, I waited in the night with my girl friend B) and many other friends and was very nice experience ( with a little help from my frigo, cards, music :lol::lol: )

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No matter if, when and where they protested.

OG exist for athlets mainly, not for TV presidents and their bank incomes.

Hopefully that should change now. The gladiatorial combats were NOT made for the gladiators. They were scheduled for the Emperor and the citizenry of Rome. The stupid atheltes of today should feel lucky anybody's watching them at all.

It's for who PAYS the bill. Not those dimwits on the field.

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Hopefully that should change now. The gladiatorial combats were NOT made for the gladiators. They were scheduled for the Emperor and the citizenry of Rome. The stupid atheltes of today should feel lucky anybody's watching them at all.

It's for who PAYS the bill. Not those dimwits on the field.

Yes of course, and there are Billions of people in 4/5th of earth that pay to watch athletes during what athlets feel their best circadian time, the other 1/5th ( in 2008 is the turn of America) should take coffee or arrange TV on their job sites. In 2012 different regions will take coffee and so on...

Ah, beside, best regards from dimwits on the field !

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Hopefully that should change now. The gladiatorial combats were NOT made for the gladiators. They were scheduled for the Emperor and the citizenry of Rome. The stupid atheltes of today should feel lucky anybody's watching them at all.

It's for who PAYS the bill. Not those dimwits on the field.

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.

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They wont be dropping it. I spoke to empolyees of BOCOG who are just LIVID with NBC for this situation.

Propblem is it is all about ratings. The higher the ratings, the higher the push for 2016 TV payments. This is literally a push by the IOC - not by NBC.

Get this scenario - higher TV ratings will push the price up for a North or South American Games in 2016.

This is what it is all about. NBC and the IOC have struck up the deal and it will not be changed - NO ONE WILL BACK DOWN.

And the USA wonders why the rest of the world struggle with their attitudes.

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They wont be dropping it. I spoke to empolyees of BOCOG who are just LIVID with NBC for this situation.

Propblem is it is all about ratings. The higher the ratings, the higher the push for 2016 TV payments. This is literally a push by the IOC - not by NBC.

Get this scenario - higher TV ratings will push the price up for a North or South American Games in 2016.

This is what it is all about. NBC and the IOC have struck up the deal and it will not be changed - NO ONE WILL BACK DOWN.

And the USA wonders why the rest of the world struggle with their attitudes.

I think it's time for other major broadcasters in the world to replace NBC or other American networks as main investor in the Olympic television rights. NBC and company have become a little bit too cocky over the years, with their demand for "America-friendly" broadcast slots. Why doesn't the European Broadcast Union, for example, outbid NBC at last?

And it's bad enough that the IOC -- whose former president Avery Brundage once was a resolute critic of television at the Games -- has become so greedy for money meanwhile and therefore poops on the demands of the athletes. The IOC seems to become more and more such an ivory-tower organisation like the FIFA.

Maybe the IOC should ask itself about sustainability: Does it really make sense to concede the American TV audience viewer-friendly times for competitions in which the Americans are maybe interested during the Olympics, but don't care for them during the following four years?

In Australia the interest in swimming is much, much higher and more sustainable than in the USA -- so why doesn't the IOC grant the Australians the viewer-friendly times?

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It does seem to make a mockery of the IOC's avowed aim to put the interests of the athletes above all!

I wonder what the reaction of the Athletes Commission (headed by Sergei Bubka?) has been to all this and how has Rogge managed to explain this decision to them?? <_<

Edited by Mainad
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In Australia the interest in swimming is much, much higher and more sustainable than in the USA -- so why doesn't the IOC grant the Australians the viewer-friendly times?

Because the US has 10x the population of Australia; and therefore delivers an exponentially higher audience viewership.

People, get over it. The Olympics ARE a business; NOT a sporting event. Besides, those athletes will get inconvenienced little. I mean, my God, once they get a medal, their future is made -- so what does it matter whether it's 8:00 am or 10:00 pm?

Also, are they switching ALL the swim category finals to the a.m.? I would think they could only do that for maybe the relay races? (I mean really don't know nor care, one way or another.)

Edited by baron-pierreIV
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NBC had every right to ask for this. Ratings for Turin were down. A lot of people are not thrilled that the games were awarded to Bejing - hence questions about viewership for '08. The negotiations will be coming up soon for 2012-16. The IOC currently makes 75% of it's television revenues off the North American market but wants more. You do the math. :rolleyes:

During Seoul NBC had the pay per view option for live t.v. and it bombed. Outside of us geeks on here, few people are going to get up in the middle of the night to watch a bocce ball final.

I am surprised at the choice of swimming however. I would have thought basketball or baseball/softball.

Besides, this gives the European outlets a little leverage for Vancouver - maybe they can ask that curling be shown live. :lol:

Edited by LA84
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Firstly, it's nowhere near 75% of IOC television revenue from the US. Secondly, Europe's contributions have grown to about two thirds of what the US pays for each Games and together with Asia have grown a far faster rate than the US. However, all this isn't the point for 2008 or any Games for that matter because the country contributing the most to the Olympics is its host - China's contributions to the 2008 Games will far outweigh those from the US, as Canada's will in 2010 and the UK's will in 2012.

I think it's so shortsighted of NBC even requesting such a huge change to scheduling - the Canadians are right to assume this as a precedent, the US will no longer be a majority shareholder in the 2010/20's, if the current growth of contributions continues in Europe and Asia - then sports will be screened at time convenient for people in Paris or Tokyo and not New York.

If NBC is so stupid as to pay so much for an event it has no idea where it will be then that's its own problem.

Also, with tensions running so high, the US and IOC heirarchy would have made so many enemies around the world, in the different NOC's and sporting bodies etc... , if these scheduling proposals are accepted the chances of an American Olympics in 2016, 2018 or 2020 would be virtually non-existant. With the current opinion of the US around the world at an all time low anyway, for non-Olympic reasons, this was the last thing the 2016 candidate cities needed.

Baron, with respect, you have so little interest in sport anyway, why are you so concerned when it will be screened? The Beijing Opening Ceremony isn't being rescheduled.

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Because the US has 10x the population of Australia; and therefore delivers an exponentially higher audience viewership.

People, get over it. The Olympics ARE a business; NOT a sporting event. Besides, those athletes will get inconvenienced little. I mean, my God, once they get a medal, their future is made -- so what does it matter whether it's 8:00 am or 10:00 pm?

Also, are they switching ALL the swim category finals to the a.m.? I would think they could only do that for maybe the relay races? (I mean really don't know nor care, one way or another.)

If this turns out to be true, then it is an absolute scandal and those within the IOC responsible for it should be sacked. It is deplorable and despicable that the interests of the dollar seem to get in the way of what should be most important - what the athletes and the local organisers want.

Whether you like it or not, Baron, you are wrong. Sure, the IOC will make a pretty penny, but they are, first and foremost, a sporting festival, the finest sporting festival to be found on the face of this planet and not a business. Without athletes and local organisers, you don't have an Olympics. It's as simple as that.

Anything which goes over the heads of or against their wishes should not happen. You can sit there pontificating and patronising as much as you bloody well like, but there is no justification whatsoever for this. I don't care how many extra millions of dollars the IOC gets in future - local organisers and athletes should come first, not a single television station. An absolute disgrace!

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Because the US has 10x the population of Australia; and therefore delivers an exponentially higher audience viewership.

People, get over it. The Olympics ARE a business; NOT a sporting event. Besides, those athletes will get inconvenienced little. I mean, my God, once they get a medal, their future is made -- so what does it matter whether it's 8:00 am or 10:00 pm?

Also, are they switching ALL the swim category finals to the a.m.? I would think they could only do that for maybe the relay races? (I mean really don't know nor care, one way or another.)

In the next 20 years we'll have hundreds of millions of people in India, China, Indonesia with better life style, those countries will pay more and more for TV rights.

It is time now for US to forget its actual superiority and be ready to share it: markets, technology, power and arts are moving ...

Concerning the time for the events, there are many serious tests made in High Sport Science laboratories that demonstrate there is A BEST TIME FOR A BEST PERFORMANCE ( without considering now the personal attitude of each athlet): the exertion of the maximum efforts has very different results at 8 in the morning, 2 in the afternoon, 7 in the evening, as different are circadian byoritm, weather temperature and humidity...

This could appear useless, but after 4 years training, even those perhaps stupid details are very very important for an athlet and his NOC.

Has the NBC the right to interfere with this ?

And if one day the best TV time for NBC ( or other its accomplice) correspond to night in the OG host country ? Will they force competitors run 100m at midnight, will they force to stage sailing at 2 in the morning, judo or taekwondo finals at 4 ? ( just befor breakfast? :lol: )

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You know, this is all so stupid. NBC asked; the IOC can refuse. Why should you blame NBC? The IOC could've told them "uh-uh."

Stu, as for your points that this little tempest in a teapot will injure US chances in the future -- perhaps the IOC members are aSTUte enough to separate a network's request; their organization's acquiesence; and a fully accredited NOC to the IOC, the USOC, which is presenting the future bids. 3 different entities, Stu. And if they do, so be it.

As for the Opening Ceremony, I don't care when they screen it because I plan to be there. So I have no argument with that. Besides, even if I weren't, I'd just accept that it's time-delayed. I won't rant and rave the way you people have been doing for a mere TV show.

If the athletes and coaches don't like it, they DON'T have to compete you know. No one is FORCING them to.

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Ya'know - I wrote this whole fabulous response that took 6 paragraphs and Baron said what I did in one. <_<

Bottom line - NBC made a request - IOC said sure - and that is the way it is.

If you have a complaint contact your local Olympic Committee.

Edited by LA84
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In other words, you're alright Jack and sod the rest of us. How selfish can you get?

No; that's not what he said. Why are you taking this personally? How many British swimmers are going to be in the finals anyway? Well, why don't your networks request the same time?

And as for that argument (Stu's I think) that well, why did NBC pay so much $$ not knowing where the Games will be ? To which I would counter:

1. Well, why is the IOC then peddling the Games to the US?

2. If it's not NBC, then what would stop another network from requesting the same? Surely they would make the request; and let the IOC decide.

3. Where is it CAST in stone that the finals of ANY event have to be in the late afternoon or evening? Sometimes people train at times when the pool is available but not a time of their choosing? What if:...oooh, I don't like Mexico City or Denver, it is too high. Or I don't like to swim in Athens, they don't have a roof! I don't like to swim in London, they have a roof! I don't like to skate in...you fill in the city...the rink is 3 inches shorter than what I'm used to.

4. Oh, I don't like this lane. I get the backwash!!

5. I'm not going to make this dive; I can't see my coach from this angle!"

That's absolute B/S. What a bunch of cry-babies!! If you're an athlete, and you compete in the int'l circuit, you compete with whatever conditions are laid out for you IN ADVANCE. Again, countering the argument -- well then why should compete if the conditions are NOT to your liking? I mean competitors have an advantage over ALL the networks, knowing 7 years in advance where the site will be. The networks don't. So maybe this schedule tweaking is just to even out the score?

This is just like the argument in CHARIOTS OF FIRE, and wherein the late Dodi Fayed and his filmmakers twisted history. Lidell and, oddly enough, Stu, Arwebb and Mainad, :blink: the British team KNEW way in advance, months before, that the finals of the 100m would be run on a Sunday -- and not at the last minute as the film advocates. To quote from Wallachinsky's book: "Actually, Lidell was informed of the schedule six months in advance and had plenty of time to adjust his training for the 200 and the 400." They weren't going to change it because of one competitor's particular situation.

So whether in real or reel life, Liddell chose to stick to his convictions AND he chose NOT to. Same thing with the current situation. They now KNOW 2 years in advance. If they don't like it; they can drop out.

I'm sure Liddell would've told you: GO with the FLOW, Jo! ;)

Edited by baron-pierreIV
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In other words, you're alright Jack and sod the rest of us. How selfish can you get?

"Selfish" would be if NBC had asked that everything be rescheduled so that we would get everything live in prime time. They asked for an event. The IOC agreed.

Firstly, it's nowhere near 75% of IOC television revenue from the US. Secondly, Europe's contributions have grown to about two thirds of what the US pays for each Games and together with Asia have grown a far faster rate than the US.

Um yes, it is about 75%. For Turin, NBC paid $613,000,000 for the rights. The combined total of every other television outlet in the world was only $219,600,000. Europes contribution was $135,000,000 and Asia about $40,000,000.

Torino Fact Sheet

Go to Page 8 for the breakdown.

Part of the reason NBC asked for this is because they are in danger of losing ad revenues because of the internet. People were getting results there and not watching t.v. during Turin which caused loss of viewership. If this trend continues then the IOC is in danger of not getting as much money out of the networks when the renegotiate contracts for 2014 and beyond.

I don't see why everyone's undies are flying up their butts. This opens the door for the European outlets to have some events in Vancouver shown live as well. To me this is a win-win proposal for everyone down the road.

Edited by LA84
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There is a principal here which is being ripped to bits by this and it stinks to high heaven.

Since when did we stop caring about the hosts of an Olympics and what they might want?

Well, maybe so. But what does China really know about staging an event? Have they hosted a FINA World Championships before? No. So why should it suddenly be Beijing's wishes having precedence? They are mere 'guardians of the Games' for one round. Who's to say it will not become the norm for London and following?

And there are some instances when the IOC exercises its pre-emptory rights. This happens to be one of them. Regardless of how you rant and rave, the IOC owns the Games; allows a city to stage them -- but ultimately, has final say over anything. Remember Salt Lake and the eventual double golds in Pairs? That was an IOC decision.

What happens in those 2 weeks' is their say and their prerogative. Maybe you are giving too much stock to the athletes? They are plenty spoiled as it is. Never has there been a time in history when they have had it so good. If you don't like the way the IOC is handling things, you can always walk away. No one's barring the door.

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But why should we simply ride roughshod over what Beijing and the athletes want just to serve the interests of one television network who are panicking they paid over the odds for the rights? If they paid too much its their problem and nobody else's.

I feel extremely strongly over this. It is my view that the IOC, if this turns out to be true, have got their priorities badly wrong on this one. Owners of the Games notwithstanding, what is the point of have athletes' representatives and a local organising committee if the IOC makes decisions like this? They might as well just do everything themselves.

It doesn't matter how you try to spin it. It's wrong and will always be wrong. No arguments, no exceptions.

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