How To Follow the Olympic Cycling (and more) Events Online and via Social Media

Posted on 27. Jul, 2012 by in news

Updates will be added with new social media avenues throughout the Olympic Games.

There are more ways to ever before to follow – via social media – the 2012 London Olympic Games which officially kick off today with the opening ceremonies. Not only are most of the athletes using social media to keep fans updated – and sponsors – but the traditional media outlets and the International Olympic Committee itself have launched programs to integrate with leading social media sites.

According to RBC Capital Market’s report following the 2010 winter Olympics, “Media and Entertainment: 1Q10 Preview & Outlook,” one third of the people watching the Olympics on their television were also on NBC’s website. That number is expected to be much bigger for these summer Olympics while many are trying to figure out how to monetize your eyeballs, your clicks, your likes, you time in front of the TV… how to monetize you.

See Olympic Cycling Events Cheat Sheet for schedule of cycling evens and venue information.

Here are a few sites and lists to help you navigate this information.

The athletes. The simplest way to follow the Canadian and American athletes racing in the four cycling events (road, track, mountain bike and BMX) is via these two twitter lists:

  • olympic-canada: the Canadian athletes participating in cycling events at the 2012 London Olympic Games. The 13 athletes out of 15 on the list are Joseph Veloce, Tara Whitten, Monique Sullivan, Gillian Carleton, Jasmin Glaesser, Ryder Hesjedal, Denise Ramsden, Max Plaxton, Geoff Kabush, Catharine Pendrel, Emily Batty,  Tory Nyhaug and Joëlle Numainville.. The two cyclists not on twitter are Zach Bell and Clara Hughes.
  • olympic-usa: the USA athletes participating in cycling events at the 2012 London Olympic Games. The 21 athletes out of the 24 athletes on the list are Bobby Lea, Dotsie Bausch, Sarah Hammer, Jennie Reed, Lauren Tamayo, Timmy Duggan, Chris Horner, Taylor Phinney, Kristin Armstrong, Amber Neben, Shelley Olds, Evelyn Stevens, Sam Schultz, Todd Wells, Lea Davison, Georgia Gould, David Herman, Connor Fields, Nic Long, Arielle Martin and Alise Post. The three not on twitter are Jimmy Watkins, Tyler Farrar and Tejay van Garderen.

The events. The International Olympic Committee has just launched a new social media hub where fans can easily connect with the athletes, via facebook, twitter and live chats. The IOC also has a twitter account. @olympics, and a facebook page. The official hashtag is @london2012

The London 2012 organization itself has a website with schedule, results and maps, a twitter account @London2012, a facebook page London2012, a youtube channel and a google+ page where they host hangout – the last one was with Usain Bolt. Automated twitter feed with all the latest events and results from Cycling were also created:

All sports have automated feeds which can be found on the London 2012 social dashboard.

Not to be undone, facebook and twitter have each created their own landing pages for the Olympic Games. The facebook Olympics page facilitates the connection with athletes and federations on its network and contains no ads. Twitter partnered with NBC Olympics to create an event page for the 2012 Olympics – how much filtering will be done on this page remains to be seen.

Media. The cycling media such as cyclingnews and cyclingweekly will be covering the races. CN will continue with their  traditional live text updates on their website while CW has announced live updates for web, tablet & smartphones.

Interestingly, AP announced that it will use a wide array of digital tools and innovations to report from London. They are using tools, from social media to HV video to text to HTML interactives to distribute content via web, tablets and smartphones. Their AP Mobile application, was expanded to provide a complete Summer Games section, including medal counts, athlete profiles, results, stories, photos and videos. Also, a new twitter account, @AP_Sports, was just launched in addition to the AP Olympics 2012 twitter list which contains all the Olympic-related AP staff accounts.

Both espn and Sports Illustrated have created Olympic hubs to provide information on the sports and stories out of London.

TV and live streams. Once again, NBC and a CTV-venture hold the rights to the broadcast and online feeds in the United States and Canada respectively.

NBC. The good news is that according to NBC, all sporting events will be streamed live on the web on NBCOlympics.com or via the tablet/mobile application called NBC Olympics Live Extra App. The bad news is that only subscriber of to a cable, satellite or telco video tier that includes CNBC and MSNBC will have access to the streams. Everyone else is out of luck as they are no options to purchase an online subscription for the Games.

The coverage of the 2010 Winter Olympics on NBC was painful to watch. From tape delays to schmalzy profiles and features, the complaints were many. TechCrunch reported in February 2010, that the Twitter Sentiment showed that 73 percent of Tweets about the NBC Olympics were negative. These numbers came from an analysis of nearly 20,000 Tweets and 5,700 blog posts and forum comments.

The complaints will start soon again because NBC has decided to delay showing the opening ceremonies on Friday with no option to watch online. The ceremonies start at 9pm BST, so 1pm PST but NBC will only be showing the ceremonies at 7:30pn on the West Coast.

You can follow (and provide feedback to) NBCOlympics via their @NBCOlympics twitter feed and facebook page.  They have also created twitter lists for every sporting discipline (see list of lists) – their NBCOlympics/cycling list contains 42 members which includes the NBC cycling commentators, Team USA cycling athletes, ‏@UCI_cycling, @USACycling, @BMCProTeam and  British cyclists @ChrisHoy, @MarkCavendish, @NicoleCooke2012 and more.

You can also follow and interact directly with the cycling commentators and producer (for other sports see list here)

CTV.  Canadian broadcast rights are held by Canada’s Olympic Broadcast Media Consortium – so like the Vancouver games, everything will be broadcast in English on CTV, TSN, TSN2, Sportsnet and OLN. Online streams are on CTVOlympics.ca. For French broadcast, it is RDS, V, RDS Info and RDSolympiques.ca. And they also have a mobile application CTV Olympics London 2012 App

According to CTVOlympics.ca, any Olympic Games coverage that appears on CTV, TSN, Sportsnet, RDS, and V will be streamed live. The sites will also offer up to 15 live, simultaneous streams from various Olympic venues.

You can follow (and provide feedback to) CTVOlympics via their @CTVOlympics twitter feed,  facebook page and google+ page.  You can follow (and provide feedback to) RDSOlympiques via their @RDSOlympiques twitter feed,  facebook page and google+ page.

The Canada’s Olympic Broadcast Media Consortium have hired 23 people to be social ambassadors for the Games – most posting in English but some in French – and are also blogging about it.

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3 Responses to “How To Follow the Olympic Cycling (and more) Events Online and via Social Media”

  1. Name

    27. Jul, 2012

    One down

  2. Name

    27. Jul, 2012

    (damn keyboard – who moved the enter key)

    One down

    https://twitter.com/jnumainville

  3. lyne

    27. Jul, 2012

    Thanks! the twitter list has been updated and more info added on the NBCOlympics and CTVOlympics social media efforts