Friday, February 12, 2010

Olympics.... Fallen Fan

The Winter Olympics start tonight. Normally I geek out over the Olympics, especially the Winter ones (I find them more exciting, interesting, and manageable than the Summer games), but I'm not sure how much I'll watch them this year. Aside from the fact that I'm busy every night next week with rehearsals and shows as Un-Scripted: unscripted opens on the 18th (buy tickets here), but I'm just not that into the Olympics anymore.

The Olympics have become so much about greed and waste and bullying that I find them a bit hard to stomach. Boing Boing has a whole host of anti-Olympic posts you can read should you so desire. An art gallery in Vancouver was forced to remove an anti-Olympic mural. They trademarked a line from the Canadian National Anthem.

This is par for the course. The IOC is a corrupt, bullying, greedy, hypocritical organization that uses trademark laws to limit the free speech and commerce of people who have the misfortune to attend or live near the games -- for example, in Athens, they forced people to take off or cover up t-shirts that had logos for companies that hadn't paid to sponsor the Olympics; and in Washington, they attacked decades-old businesses named after nearby Mount Olympia.

Not to mention the ridiculously wasteful environmental impact. China's Bird's Nest Stadium now sits rotting without any tenants or regular events, along with several other Beijing venues.

Then there's the incompetent way NBC has handled the TV coverage for the last 20 years. How such a backwards joke of a network that can't do anything right gets to broadcast the Olympics I'll never know. Sure they pay for it, but how? It looks like once again this year West Coast viewers will have to wait and watch their prime-time "live" coverage on tape-delay, in-spite of the fact that WE'RE IN THE SAME TIME ZONE. So all those events you get to watch live on the East Coast, we'll have to wait 3 hours to see. (I still think there should be a law against putting a little "Live" graphic on a screen if it's not actually live.) They also aren't allowing any streaming of live coverage, except a handful of hockey games and curling matches. Clearly NBC is only interested in older viewers who aren't actually sports fans.

They make all of these bone-headed decisions and then wonder why they expect to lose $200 million on their coverage this year. Fortunately their contract is up after the 2012 London Games. Hopefully the ABC/ESPN juggernaut will snap them up and finally do the Olympics right.

1 comment:

  1. I'm right there with you on this one. The amount of money that pours into these games is absurd. It has gone far beyond a celebration of athleticism and is now just another grab for cash.
    I'll pass, thanks.


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