Olympics

No shirt, no shoes, no problem?

Don’t you think it would be a little too cold to pose for semi-nude photos on the top of a ski slope? Apparently Jackie Chamoun didn’t think so! The Lebanese Olympian skier got herself into a little publicity fiasco when pictures of her posing topless in her ski gear for an Austrian calendar. The photos were taken 3 years ago, but obviously surfaced once she was participating in the Olympics. The Lebanese minister of youth and sports ordered an investigation after hearing about the photos.

With all of the media uproar about the situation, some fans decided to show support for her during this time. After all, we all make mistakes, were all human. That’s when #stripforjackie came in to play. Tons of people took to twitter to express how they felt about the situation. Thousands of people took pictures of themselves clothed, nude, and semi-nude, posting them on social media with #SripForJackie attached to show their support. The campaign as a whole is called “I am not naked”

Personally, I see nothing wrong with her actions. People worship celebrities that go out and do risqué things every single day. Jackie decided one time to do something out of the norm and all of a sudden people make it out to seem like she’s an awful person. There are far worse issues going around all over the country, but everyone makes a big fuss about an athlete standing in the snow with her breasts out. To me, this whole ordeal just reinforced the fact that this world needs to get their priorities straight. This is an awesome campaign, and I hope to see Jackie take charge and go further with it.

Athletes Use of Social Media in the Olympics

As Sochi prepared to host many olympics athletes from all over the world, they weren’t ready for the negative social media that they got right away. Many of the journalists who traveled to Sochi were disappointed with what they were arriving to. Several journalists tweeted that only 6 of the 9 hotels that were set aside for the journalists were ready for them and many didn’t have rooms finished or water to use. This lead to the creation of #SochiProplems and @SochiProblems on Twitter. Even before they arrived, one of the Olympic Committee members told journalists that the use of social media would result in them losing their credentials and those caught using social media would be banned from the winter games. This forced the Olympic Committee to clarify their stance and later said they encourage the use of social media. All this negativity wasn’t the way that Sochi wanted to start the Olympic games off with. 

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However, the athletes use of social media more than made up for the negativity that it started out with. I followed Ryan Miller, the Team USA goalie, throughout the Olympics and his use on his Twitter account. He posted many pictures throughout the Olympics, anything from getting ready to leave the US for Russia, to the new gear he got for the Olympics and his dog wearing his goalie mask. It was really entertaining to see his posts throughout the Olympics because it gave you a unique insight into what the USA Hockey team was doing on a daily basis as well as what he was doing. I really enjoyed seeing the different pictures that he posted because it made me feel like I was actually there for a moment through those pictures. Ultimately, this was his goal, to use Twitter to connect with friends, fans, and family who couldn’t make the trip and still make them all feel like they could share his experiences that he was having. 

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I really enjoyed how he used social media to connect to fans. I think athletes use of social media is great because it allows for there to be a more personal connections to fans like myself. The question I have is does athletes use of social media make you feel like you have a more personal connection with that athlete because of their pictures, etc?

 

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Closing Ceremonies Successful?

The Opening and Closing ceremonies are a time that countries come together and celebrate.  It is a time where the whole world keeps their eyes on the television to see what exciting things will happen. The opening ceremonies were great and since some malfunctions took place (the non-opening ring) Sochi wanted to make the closing ceremonies memorable and fully functional.

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It started with Russia poking fun at no other than their own opening ceremony. When dancers of all ages took to the floor to start off the ceremony they formed many shapes, the most memorable being the Olympic rings. To make everyone laugh a group of dancers stayed closed while the others opened just like the malfunction that happened at the opening games.

After that, the countries all came in as one and watched the rest of the ceremony which included, a giant piano concert, a giant bear crying, and the spectacular firework display at the end. I personally was creeped out by the bear because imagine that coming up to you and gesturing you to hang out with him. I just don’t trust giant animals. Back to the games, the piano concert consisted of 62 pianists that played “Piano Concert Number 2” and incorporated ballerinas. The fireworks throughout and at the end of the ceremony were my favorite part. They were breathtaking to watch on the television I could only imagine what it was like to see them in person.

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All in all I think the closing ceremony was extremely successful. I enjoyed watching it and although the scary bear crying during the extinguishing of the flame I think they did a very good job.

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All in all I think the closing ceremony was extremely successful. I enjoyed watching it and although the scary bear crying during the extinguishing of the flame I think they did a very good job.

Why is Everyone Naked?

Jackie Chamoun, a Lebanese skier, has left her mark in the world of social media. After risqué photos of her were leaked onto the internet a whole social media campaign has started around her actions. #stripforjackie is a new social media campaign that has others taking off their clothes to support Chamoun and her choices. Three years ago, Jack Chamoun posed practically nude at a popular ski resort for an Austrian calendar. In one of the photos, her chest is covered by skis but their are others that show a more exposed Jackie. Upon the release of these photos, an investigation was launched by the Lebanese minister for sports and youth on the Lebanese Olympic Committee. Lebanese culture is one that is very conservative so these photos might have been a shock to many yet, there is evidence of other times Lebanese women have posed in a not so conservative way for publications such as Playboy Magazine.

Due to the commotion lebenease officials are making over the photo shoot, many choose to show their support for Chamoun by taking off their own clothes and “Stripping for Jackie”. The official name of the campaign is “I am not naked” and in the pictures taken by many people, they are holding a sign with the hashtag “strip for jackie” that cover up the parts of their bodies they wish to have unseen.

After reading many articles about the campaign, I believe the goal is to show that just because someone has a risqué photo shoot it doesn’t mean they are a bad person or that it makes them any less of a good athlete. A lot of people are also jumping to the idea of censorship in their country and this campaign addresses the issues. I found a quote on one of the websites I was looking at and I think it’s a good summary of a goal they have for this campaign. “Some women are beaten or killed, others are raped, and the media shifts their attention to a confident talented beautiful woman who represents her country at the Olympic games. This is about telling our “peers” to set their priorities straight. This is to fight censorship. This is for freedom.” this quote also showed me that there are pictures being post to stand up against domestic violence as well, so this campaign is being taken in a few different directions.

http://hummusforthought.com/2014/02/12/stripforjackie-campaign-gains-momentum/

I think the hashtag is catchy, it has the word strip in it which can capture someone’s attention almost immediately because “stripping” is not something of any cultures norm. I also think that attaching a visual element onto the post makes it effective as well. It can say a lot more than the words can because a person who has the courage to show themselves in front of a camera AND online in front of everyone is very bold. 

Now, my question is, would people in America do the same for an olympian who took risqué photos or would we be quick to assume the worst of them?

https://www.facebook.com/iamnotnaked

 

Women’s Hockey More Popular Than Men’s?

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On February 20th the United States took on Canada in the women’s hockey gold medal game, and the following day the same two countries faced off in the men’s semi-final. Both the U.S. and Canada are very passionate about hockey, but it is thought that the men’s game is more cared about than the women’s. According to an analysis done on the social media management tool HootSuite, that may not be the case.

More people took to social media to mention the women’s gold medal game than did for the men’s semi-final game between the U.S. and Canada. (Canada won both games) The women’s game may have been a little bit more exciting, as it was ended in overtime on a goal by Canada’s Marie-Phillip Poulin. This game was mentioned over 121,000 times on social media, while the men’s game which ended in a 1-0 Canadian win, was mentioned 109,000 times.

Although the women’s game was more popular on social media, the male hockey players were more popular than the female athletes. The most talked about female hockey player was Hilary Knight, a United States forward. She was mentioned 7,063 times on social media. Compare this to the most mentioned male hockey player Carey Price, the Canadian goalie, who was mentioned over 25,000 times. That’s a difference of about 18,000 mentions between the most popular male and female hockey player.

So what we can take form this analysis is that the women’s game definitely generated more buzz via social media, but at the end of the day the well-known popular male hockey players still get mentioned more than the women athletes. So just because the women’s hockey game outdid the men’s on social media, doesn’t necessarily mean it is more popular than men’s hockey. It is very eye-opening and surprising to see that the women’s game did in fact generate more buzz than the men’s game, and it will be interesting to see in future Olympic Games if this continues to be the case.

From Sochi to Stardom

Now that the 2014 Winter Olympic games are over, it is clear that Sochi not only set the stage for athletes to be watched during their events; the eyes were also now on social media.  From simple selfies, wolf hoaxes, being trapped in bathrooms, and everything in between, the social media presence was one that has never been seen before for an Olympic games.

If you were not paying particular attention to the games, you might think that “being trapped in bathrooms” was a misprint, but it definitely happened.  U.S. bobsledder Johnny Quinn was taking a shower and when the door either became locked or jammed, trapping the Olympian inside.  Quinn then “used his bobsled push training” to escape from the bathroom, destroying the door to escape.  The bobsledder took to Twitter to share his experience, saying “I knew when I posted that photo I’d probably get a couple of retweets, a couple of funny comments, but nothing to the extent of what has happened.”  The post has received tens of thousands of favorites and retweets, making Quinn an overnight viral sensation.

Ski slopestyle silver medalist Gus Kenworthy also made a splash on Twitter, with maybe the biggest “aww” moment of the Olympics, especially for dog lovers.  Kenworthy posted pictures of himself with stray dogs, with one in particular gaining attention.  The picture is of him sleeping with his medal that he earned, and one of the puppies that he is adopting, Rosa, draped on his chest.  Kenworthy as since finalized arrangements to adopt five dogs from Sochi, four puppies and their mother.  Between winning the silver medal, and all of the great publicity from his Twitter, Kenworthy had himself an Olympics to remember.

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It was not only the newcomers that added to their followers, however.  U.S. hockey player T.J. Oshie of the St. Louis Blues, who had the big shootout performance against Russia, saw himself become an even bigger and more recognized star in the hockey world, gaining 130,000 followers since his performance.

The unique combination of social media and the Olympics this year has propelled many athletes into the worldwide spotlight, whether they won multiple medals or none at all.  This shows the great impact that social media has had on sports, and most other topics in the world.

#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?

Follow me

Early in the olympics a lot of the top events got a ton of media coverage. The games started on Feb. 6, 2014 in Sochi, Russia. Early on was the first ever snowboarding slopestyle games. With heavy coverage going on during the final run new comer and male snow boarder Sage Kotsenburg pulled out a great run and won his first gold medal.

Most of these athletes have twitter accounts to respond to any fans asking them questions or thanking them for wishing them luck on the next run.With winning on an international field comes a little fame to it. How many followers did Sage receive after winning Olympic gold? From Feb. 5th (When preliminaries started) to Feb. 13th he had gotten 54,421 new followers (7,425-61,846)! The crazy thing is that he didn’t even receive the most followers of all Olympic athletes competing. Shaun White, one of the best snow boarders of all time received over 80,000 in the same span! He already had over a million followers to boot. And what’s crazier about all of this is that he didn’t even win his best event (half-pipe). He didn’t even medal! He got fourth and still gained all these followers.

From what I have noticed is that there might be a secret formula on how to gain followers. It is just about being yourself and if you become great at what you do, they will follow. Seriously, people like to follow winners. I do at least. These Olympics put these athletes on pinnacles because they are the best of the best and when they represent your country well and succeed everyone wants to be apart of that. Even if you have already made a name for yourself and don’t succeed every time people will still support that person.

My question for you guys is “Does success play the biggest role in obtaining twitter followers or is it more then that?”

 

 

Kate Hansen Cries Wolf

SOCHI, Russia- U.S. Luger, Kate Hansen has spotted a “wolf” in the halls of her Sochi Dorm room.  The Olympic athlete released a 17 second video on YouTube, showing the “wolf” wondering through the halls of the dorm.Image 

Here is the official video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3qZA-xOeQmE

Hansen tweeted the link to the video on her Twitter account.  The YouTube video has had over 1 million views, and more than 1,100 people have commented on the video stating whether they believe it is real wolf or just a stray dog.  Russia has been struggling with stray dogs in the area around the Olympic Games.  However, Hansen did not believe it was a stray dog and asked her 20,000 Twitter followers what they thought about the so called wolf.  In addition to reaching Hansen’s Twitter followers, the video has been shown all over media-outlets.  Some people think it is real, while others believe it was just a hoax.

Recently, reports have shown that the video was in fact a real wolf.  However, the wolf was not a Russian wolf.  In fact, the wolf was an American wolf.  You may ask, well what was an American wolf doing in Sochi, Russia?  The answer to that question is simple.   The wolf was not in Sochi.  In fact, the wolf was filmed in America walking on a set that resembled the dorms in Sochi. 

Now the question is who would do such a thing?  Was it Kate Hansen?  To an extent, the prank was partially executed by Kate Hansen.  Hansen was working with comedian, Jimmy Kimmel throughout the whole process.  Jimmy Kimmel has been known to be the mastermind behind many viral video pranks.  Jimmy Kimmel revealed the prank on his show and proved how American news can go viral in a matter of minutes, even if the news is not actually true.

Here is the link to the “Wolf” Prank being revealed: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hze_6-f5KNA#t=113

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