Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The Olympics and Social Media .... Not a Match

I love the Olympics. Sports, Drama, and the appeal to my hyper-patriotism....it's a perfect combination to me.

I love social media, particularly twitter. It allows for instant news updates from around the world. It connects me with like minded people from my area, state, country, world.  Hell, because of Twitter I met my girlfriend.

I HATE OLYMPICS & SOCIAL MEDIA TOGETHER! ... I like to watch sport, and be riveted on the edge of my seat as it unfolds on TV.  With the Olympics being in London this year, NBC is doing what they always do when the Olympics are taking place in a country with a large time zone difference. They pre-record all of the drama, and give me a condensed 4 hour blast of everything I need to know.  It's perfect summer night television!

However, people have this need now for immediacy, so NBC has provided an online feed for live events. Now the every day twitter user, who works late/has no job/slacks on the job/works from home, can watch the games as they happen in real time.  Great for them, but that's not what I want.  So, with their need to share what they just saw, coupled with journalists' need to be the first to report in order to justify their dying profession....I've essentially been banished from the internet by no fault of my own.

I've long complained of friends giving spoilers to television shows on Twitter. It's a DVR world, don't ruin things for everyone else.  But, I can still watch the show and appreciate it.  If I know a sporting event though....completely ruins it.  What if I told you that the Brewers won a baseball game 4-1...would you have this need to watch the game after that? ... Probably not, what's the point? With sport, the beauty of it is....it's not scripted, anything can happen, so, if you know what happens, you don't get that "edge of your seat" feeling.

I learned on Monday, to stay away from all news sites, because they are inconsiderate, and are reporting on their front page what happens. It's simple news sites....A LINK! "Click here for results of Women's Gymnastics" ... If people want to know, they click, if not....you don't infuriate them! ... but, I learned that lesson, and I wasn't going to give them any CPM revenue for the next couple of weeks.  Then CNN found a way to still tick me off....a twitter post!

Now, I should've known better. But, I honestly wasn't thinking about it, I was on lunch, just scrolling through, killing time.  And, I didn't expect a major news site to ruin it via twitter, they should have a link that directs you to their site.  But, there the result was ... evening plans, ruined.

Now, CNN wasn't the only one at fault, there were plenty of individual users who blasted it as well.  So unbelievably rude and inconsiderate! ... Sure, I don't have to look at twitter, but why should I be the one going out of my way to avoid rudeness?

People keep saying #NBCfail....and I have no idea why. NBC offered a live option for those that wanted it, and a traditional option for those who want it. It's really a #socialmediafail that's upsetting people, not the other way around.

Now, this is the first big test to the tape delayed Olympics/twitter pairing for the US market. 2008 twitter was in its infancy, and 2010 the games were in Canada. ... 2016 will be back in our time zone as well, but 2014 will be in Russia...let's hope we get the same courtesy to one another as we do with the NSFW tag.  We've mastered not sharing porn without a warning...let's do the same with sports.