2014 Winter Olympics

McDonald’s supporting 2014 Winter Games

Partnered with the Olympics, McDonald’s reaches millions of fans around the world with their campaign “Cheers To Sochi” this campaign was created so that supporters of the Olympics can personally send messages or “cheers” to their favorite athlete using the hashtag #CheersToSochi on twitter or by viewing www.cheerstosochi.com. Global chief brand officer of McDonald’s Corporation, Steve Easterbrook, stated “McDonald’s takes tremendous pride in our 38-year partnership of the Games, and we share in the International Olympic Committee’s passion for bringing the world together. This Olympic experience gives fans the ability to make personal connections with athletes in Sochi in a way they’ve never had before.” Current Olympic athletes support “CheersToSochi”. Patrick Kane US hockey player, Drew Doughty Canadian Hockey Player, and several other athletes encourage fans from all around the world to send #CheersToSochi as they watch the games.

McDonald’s acknowledges that activists target Olympic sponsors to voice their opinions regarding the Russian LGBT legislation. McDonald’s supports the tradition of the Olympics, all the hard working athletes who participate in the Olympics, and especially human rights. McDonald’s campaign “Cheers To Sochi” is discrimination free. McDonald’s believes that the Olympic Games should be available for everyone including spectators, officials, media and athletes.  The “Cheers to Sochi” campaign is just one way that McDonald’s will celebrate the Olympic winter games. McDonald’s strives to bring family and friends together and to do that a new playground will be donated to the city of Sochi. McDonald’s generous donations, programs, and “Cheers To Sochi” campaign truly expresses their partnership and commitment McDonald’s has with the Olympics.

Fans can visit www.cheerstosochi.com to send “cheers” or messages to athletes and teams as they get ready to compete in the Sochi 2014 Winter Games.

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Shaun White. No medal, even more problems.

Shaun White lands on just more than snow at the Olympics at Sochi

Shaun White lands on just more than snow in the Olympics at Sochi

Who was the most tweeted and posted about athlete during the 2014 Sochi Olympics? Most of us would think the American hockey hero T.J. Oshie from his heroic game against the Russians. Maybe, one of the many athletes who took home a medal for the USA. None of them were as big or blew up social media as much as Shaun White the snowboarder did.

 

Shaun White was the first big controversal story of the 2014 Sochi Olympics. When he decided to drop out of the slopestyle snowboarding event because of a “wrist injury” that occurred during a training session. He told the media and his fans that he wanted to focus on the half-pipe event. An olympic event White has won the past two gold medals in. *No olympic Winter athlete has ever won three straight gold medals in one event*. White ended up placing fourth in the half-pipe and lost his chance at olympic history.

 

Instead White made history in a different way, Facebook history. White was the most mentioned/posted athlete during the olympics on Facebook. What does that truly say to us as a society? So many athletes with incredible background stories, the great games played, and records being broke during the olympics. We tend to enjoy to talk about the disappointment and agony of defeat. We are also a society that has become “what have you done lately” instead of looking at a person’s full career.

White now instead of embracing olympic history must embrace all the angry snowboarders for his decisions this past olympics. The snowboarders made their feelings very clear during the time of the announcement of dropping out of the slopestyle event. He must now face those fellow snowboarders in person and on Facebook and Twitter.

#SochiProblems Reveals Real Problems in Sochi, Russia

Journalists, Olympians, and tourists took to #SochiProblems on Twitter to reveal the poor conditions they’ve experienced in Sochi, Russia for the Olympic Games the past two weeks.

Although the hashtag and account (@SochiProblems) are meant to be humorous, did the tweets reveal actual concern for the problems in Russia? Should journalists have taken the time to report on such poor conditions in post-Soviet Russia? Maybe all of this is just a cultural misunderstanding. Maybe living conditions were the last thing on the government’s minds, granted Russia was facing other major problems like terrorist threats and anti-gay attacks.

Here are some examples of such tweets from journalists who stayed in Sochi:

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If accommodations made for journalists and olympians were so poor, what are the living conditions for the rest of the population? Russia seemed to unintentionally portray themselves as a third-world country, possibly an indication of a much greater issue.

The Twitter handle @SochiProblems currently has 325K followers. Throughout the Olympic Games, the account has tweeted and retweeted comical tweets about the unfortunate conditions. More users seem to focus on making fun of the conditions rather than show concern, which has been insulting to many Russians.

Numerous articles have stated that #SochiProblems is more of an embarrassment for America than it is for Russia because of ignorance. (Here’s one article: http://www.policymic.com/articles/81663/sochiproblems-is-more-of-an-embarrassment-for-america-than-it-is-for-russia).

Whether the hashtag leads to funny tweets or not, in the end it reveals possible living condition problems in Sochi, Russia. Should such conditions be ignored by the rest of world or is our duty to report about it?

#CheersToSochi, Some People are Not “Lovin It”

There’s no doubt, we all know Russia’s views about the LGBT community, which has been clearly showcased for the 22 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. This of course has spiked a heated issue within the LGBT community where many people have openly voiced boycotting the Olympics in its entirety.

But, it hasn’t stopped there. Major sponsors of the Olympics, such as McDonald’s have gotten the wrath from individuals all over. People think the corporations support Russia’s views because they have signed on to be sponsors. That is not the case! Inevitably the companies are sponsors to help their brand, marketing and revenue on an international scale…nothing more!

Focusing specifically on McDonald’s, the corporation launched #CheersSochi on Twitter for people to write their support for those competing in the Olympics. However, this idea to boost Olympians confidence has turned into a way for people to further show their outrage about McDonald’s being a sponsor of the Olympics. The hashtag was later removed and #CheersToSochi was then created for people to continue their “hate.”

McDonald’s quickly responded to peoples’ tweets and concerns on the corporations website by saying the company support human rights and believe that the Olympics should be open to everyone without discrimination. The company also supports all those competing and wanted to use Twitter to simply inspire the athletes.

That statement, however, hasn’t stopped people using #CheersToSochi to bash the company for sponsoring the Olympics, which is also known as “hashtag hijacking.” It’s clear that peoples’ goals for their tweets are to show their distaste for what Russia stands for, in hopes to shed light into the LGBT community by using the hashtag #CheersToSochi.

In my opinion, I think McDonald’s is not at fault for anything, in fact, the company has shown its support for equality and tried to help our fellow Americans in Sochi by creating the hashtag in the first place. After McDonald’s posted the statement about equality on their website, people should have understood what the company stands for and stopped tweeting their anger. Instead, support Team USA with the hashtag!

So, I leave you, the reader, with the question, do you think McDonald’s supports Russia’s views?

[Photo Curtesy of Google Images]

[Photo Curtesy of Google Images]

[Photo Curtesy of Google Images]

[Photo Curtesy of Google Images

No Cable? No Problem! Stay Tuned on Twitter

Like the majority of college students in the world, I am a little low on monetary funds and have had to make some tough financial choices throughout my four years. For instance, I now only allow myself to purchase things that are on sale, sometimes I even cut coupons! One of the more difficult choices I’ve made to save money was deciding to forgo cable. I know, I know, how does she do it you ask? Well, I accomplish this feat with a great deal of Netflix and a little bit of mooching off of my friends.  However, when it came to the winter Olympics, spending every day at a friend’s house monopolizing their TV was not an option.

Luckily, the Olympics took to social media and cable was no longer a necessity to stay up-to-date on the games!

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@Sochi2014 is a twitter account created to constantly update followers on every aspect of the Winter Games. The account tweeted and posted pictures pertaining to every aspect of the Winter Games including:

  • the opening ceremony
  • the closing ceremony
  • the Sochi 2014 Bear
  • daily schedule
  • scores
  • standings
  • countdowns to events

And so much more!

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Above is an example of a daily schedule @Sochi2014 posted for its followers. Its readability and accessibility made it convenient for anyone to view and download any time of day.

@Sochi2014 also utilized hashtags and Olympian’s usernames enabling its followers to view their favorite topics and stay current on their favorite athletes:

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As well as their favorite teams:

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We are all aware that social media and the internet in general, are becoming increasingly influential and necessary to our everyday lives. However, witnessing the reach and capability of social media as a communication outlet, specifically in regards to the Olympics, still ceases to amaze me.

Without cable, I have managed to stay tuned to every event and outcome of the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics. What are your views on using social media to stay current on the Olympic Games? Is it just as effective, if not more, than watching each event live?

Coca-Cola Criticized for Social Media Campaign Banning the Word “Gay”

A lot of the social media buzz during the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics surrounded LGBT issues and Russia’s anti-gay law. Sochi sponsor Coca-Cola was unable to escape that buzz.

Russia has an anti-gay law that bans pro-gay “propaganda” that could be accessible to minors. Critics say it is so restrictive that it forbids almost any public expression of support for gay rights.

Coca-Cola launched a social media campaign allowing users to type in their name or a message through their website and see it printed on a virtual Coca-Cola can, which they can then share with friends and followers on social media networks. Coca-Cola faced a big problem when users started to notice when they typed the word “gay,” Coca-Cola responded with, “Oops. Let’s pretend you didn’t just type that.” However, if users were to type the word “straight,” the website allowed them to.

The social media campaign was meant to send positive messages to Olympic athletes, cheering them on, but after Olympic gay rights activists hijacked their social media campaign for not supporting LGBT rights, Coca-Cola’s social media campaign went down the drain.

An organization called Queer Nation NY re-edited Coca-Cola’s famous 1971 commercial from singers on a hilltop called “I’d Like to Buy the World a Coke” to scenes of protesters in Russia being attacked  for publicly expressing gay rights.

Coca-Cola responded by uploading the commercial to Facebook and adding the comment, “Cheers to the fact that a song can top the charts and be above love, equality and happiness. #AmericaIsBeautiful.” Coca-Cola’s response played on their Super Bowl campaign, America is Beautiful and Coke is for everyone and continued with #AmericaIsBeautiful throughout the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games.

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Coca-Cola took a big hit with their social media campaign as did other big sponsors like McDonald’s and Visa, but I think Coca-Cola responded well to their crisis by applying their super bowl message to the Sochi Winter Olympics.

What do you think of Coca-Cola’s Sochi social media campaign and how they responded to the crisis?

Sochi Winter Olympics @OHT

 

@OHT is the twitter Handle for One Hour Translation, a professional translation service backed by 15,000 professional HUMAN translators! @OHT offered services for free surrounding the Winter Olympics in Sochi.

The service proved to be a success. It was promoted by Mashable, SD Times, Fast Company and more. The Israeli app proved to be popular, ranking number one by the British Telegraph.

So what made @OHT so trendy during the winter Olympics? One Hour Translation offered free services to twitter users who were seeking to understand any phrase, sign, tweet, etc. that was in another language and it was simple to do and responses were fast. One Hour Translation released a statement that the services would be available for free during the winter Olympics. From athletes, reporters and visitors in Sochi, to fans at home anyone could tweet a phrase to @OHT followed by the language they would like it to be translated in to and receive a rapid response.
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With the service open to everyone from start to finish of the Winter Olympics, Ofer Shoshan, CEO of One Hour Translation was seeking none other than success in marketing of his brand, and why should he?

With the Olympics being an international sporting event and a global economy severely lacking in communication skills and language translation @OHT was sure to make a social media statement by offering free services.

Over all I have to say that the One Hour Translation marketing platform during the Winter Olympics was a great idea for PR, and from what I can tell proved to be successful, at least by the British Telegraph.

Did you know about the convenient handle on twitter, @OHT?

Did you use the service or did you find another service to be more useful?

Olympians Going For More Than Gold

According to several sources, Olympic Athletes are currently using the app Tinder to check each other out in the middle of nowhere Russian town of Sochi. United States Olympic gold medal winning snowboarder Jamie Anderson admitted to using the app herself in the little to no nightlife town, where the single athletes are apparently feeling a bit cooped up. Anderson was quoted in US Weekly saying, “Tinder in the Olympic Village is next level. It’s all athletes! In the mountain village it’s all athletes. It’s hilarious. There are some cuties on there.” The full story can be seen here: http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2014/02/13/olympians-get-sexy-at-sochi-with-tinder-app/. So, just how many of the athletes are actually utilizing the dating app? Well, according to an article written by Lauren O’Neil of CBC Sports, there have been 21 confirmed female profiles on the app so far! http://olympics.cbc.ca/news/article/olympians-using-hook-app-tinder-sochi.html This may not seem like many, but you have to look at it from this perspective, the app uses GPS to locate other users who are near your current location. Since Sochi is so rural, ALL of the other users are Olympic Athletes! That gives a lot of singles a great handful of physically fit people to choose from, who are all some of the best athletes in their respective sports. Perhaps the app became a distraction for Shaun White and led to his ultimate downfall, unlike Jamie Anderson who deleted the app when she realized how much of a distraction it was! Sounds like another addition to #sochiproblems.

Team USA wins against Russia: T.J. Oshie plays hero in shoot out

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SOCHI Russia – What started off as a celebration for an entire country ended in only silence except for those fans who are brave enough to wave the US flag in enemy territory. Russia had anticipated this game for months and the way it ended was not how they expected. A shootout loss. Watch the shootout here. T.J. Oshie was the big hero on the eighth round of the shootout, followed by Jonathan Quick’s stop of Ilya Kovalchuk, to launch the epic victory for the US. This was indeed an amazing event to be watching. With the Russians scoring first, it was 1-0 when Cam Fowler attempted a shot and managed to get the puck passed the Russian goaltender on a power play. The US team finally managed to take the lead with about 10 minutes remaining in the game. It was at this point that the US team was predicted to win. However, the Russians quickly responded this time firing a shot through Quick’s legs and tied the game. Then came the controversy. When Fyodor Tyutin scored breaking the tie, the play was challenged. The referees looked at the replay and disallowed the goal because the net fell off of the moorings. This stunned the crowd including the Russian President Vladimir Putin. The two teams ended up in overtime and after eight intense shootout rounds, it was Oshie who beat Bobrovski for the winning goal. The two teams respectfully shook hands on the ice and the game concluded.

Twitter fans from all over were buzzing about T.J. Oshie and his victory in the shootout. Posts range from funny meems to strong words of encouragemnent. There was even a new hashtag trending #YouJustGotOshied. @OSH74 has over 200,00 followers now. Check out some twitter responses here.

Olympians (and some brands) jump on #SochiSelfie trend

We all were either shocked or unphased by the naming of “Selfie” as 2013’s word of the year, but the trend didn’t stop there.  Olympians of all kinds are taking the time to put their front facing cell phone camera to use and in doing so sharing the experience of the Sochi Olympics with their thousands of followers back home and throughout the world.

Steven Holcomb USA Bobsled

Steven Holcomb, USA Bobsleder, used the #SochiSelfie hashtag on Twitter and shared a photo he posted to Facebook with the Olympic rings behind him.

Aimee Fuller GB Snowboarding

Aimee Fuller, Team GB Snowboarder takes a selfie in front of a Russian statue and NBC Olympics posted it to Twitter.

preston griffail putin selfie

Preston Griffall, a part of the USA Luge team snaps a selfie with a distant Vladmir Putin in the background and posts to Twitter.  Snapping selfies with Putin also became a small trend on social media throughout the Games.

Oreo selfie

Even milk’s favorite cookie, Oreo, joined in on the #SochiSelfie trend posting this close-up to Twitter.

Any event, even the Olympics, becomes a social sharing event thanks to today’s social media networks, phones and other technology.  Through the use of their social media accounts, Olympians seem more like us: sharing moments that they want to remember with their followers.

Despite the early questions of media and social media use at the start of the Games, many of the Olympians have jumped on board.  The IOC’s Social Media Guidelines outline that they must post in first-person in a diary-type format.  They must not “assume the role of a journalist, reporter or any other media capacity, or disclose any information which is confidential or private in relation to any other person or organization.” Photo guidelines state that they are not “permitted to commercialize, sell or otherwise distribute these photographs.”  Although there are guidelines to what can be posted, Olympians seem to be making the most of it sharing photos of meeting others and representing their country.

Unfortunately, it seems the selfie trend isn’t going away any time soon. Here are some more #SochiSelfies.