The Olympics are coming! The Olympics are coming!

by Colin McGuire. 0 Comments

The London Olympics officially kick off Friday night with an opening ceremony that is promised to be as surprising and shocking as anything human eyes have ever seen. And by “surprising and shocking,” I mean, “pompous and predictable,” of course.

This year’s games are going to be important to the history of Internet television lore as for the first time, NBC will show every tiny moment in one way or the other on the InterWebs. This story isn’t particularly new, of course, though we here at TV Without A TV have been waiting oh, so patiently for this very moment to remind the world of how important this approach will be.

So, well, consider yourself reminded. Oh, and you’re welcome.

The most interesting thing to discuss here is what the fine people at Media Bistro did to illustrate all that’s in front of us. From Shea Bennett …

“Did you know that people plan to spend an average of 6.725 hours each weekday watching the 2012 London Olympic Games?” Bennett asked today. “If that figure seems a little high, here’s the kicker — one in five users plan to watch the Games at work, and some 46 percent plan to access this content on their laptop.”

OK. OK. Still not impressed? Click on over to their site and have a look at the neat infographics created to break down the games. Among the statistics Tech Bargains found while surveying 1,330 customers …

– 1 in 5 people will watch the Olympics at work (wait — you already knew that). 4 out of five people at work will then subsequently ask 1 out of every 5 people how athletes accumulate points in synchronized swimming.

– 46 percent of viewers will take it all in on their laptops (wait — you knew that, too) while 39 percent will opt for their desktop. People without computers, meanwhile, said they would be expecting an influx of telegrams strung together by shoestring in the next few weeks.

– The men’s favorite event to watch? Swimming. The women? Gymnastics. As for pets, most each animal surveyed responded by “being partial to Badminton.”

– 77 percent of viewers will post things on their Facebook pages in response to what happens while 31 percent of people will turn to Twitter. 20 percent will use Google Plus, and 95 percent of viewers asked what Google Plus is. 

And finally …

– 50 percent of everyone surveyed said they would watch the Olympics in 3D if they had the right equipment to do so. When asked for a reason, 38 percent of those people said it was because the last thing they saw in 3D was “John Carter” and they needed something to burn those memories out of their head. 

Trust me — this all looks a lot more interesting if you click here.

In addition to that spectacularly spectacular information, NPR’s The Torch blog published a quick rundown of everything you might want to know leading up to Friday’s ceremony. Among all of that information, the site’s Bill Chappell noted …

– NBC will be offering up more than 5,500 hours of video between television and digital services. Approximately 5,282 of those 5,500 hours will be dedicated to profiling each athlete participating in Fencing and Table Tennis.

– Full replays for all 302 events at this year’s Olympics will be available at NBC’s website. All Canoeing coverage will cost you extra, though.

– Almost five billion people will watch the games this year. Of that number, only 5,928 of them will not be related to anyone participating in or attending the games themselves.

– This is all in response to people being angry in 2008 when the network saved all the best events for television and aired the not-so-neat competitions online. Naturally, then, we wonder why “Parenthood” is still airing on the network itself.

And finally … 

– Not every piece of video on NBC’s site will be accompanied by production and/or commentary. Or in other words, some diving competitions may appear to be held in your nearest middle school swimming center, complete with obnoxiously loud parents, homemade signs and a video quality that kind of looks like the whole thing was lost footage from “The Blair Witch Project.”

Trust me — this all appears more coherent if you click here.

… And so it goes. While the super-duper secret opening ceremony is set for Friday, the first competition will kick off next Wednesday with women’s soccer. The U.S. currently leads all other countries going into this year’s games with a total of 2,298 medals all time, though the true winner in all of this is clearly us, the Olympic television consumers. The Internet: Where else could you stalk your ex-girlfriend from sophomore year of high school and watch some 500 pound dude lift weights with so much vigor, it looks as though his head could pop off at any moment?

Who says technology is bad.

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