Monday, August 25, 2008

Olympics - Some thoughts

Olympic games (summer) got over yesterday in Beijing. I am extremely happy that China won the overall medal tally surpassing US. Still, US media might believe that they are the first after adding gold, silver and bronze together. It does not matter as US always has the habit of changing the rules and regulations to make sure that they are the first.

I was able to witness all the gold medal runs of Usain Bolt who set 3 world records. I was amazed by his confidence as he started celebrating every time even before reaching the finishing line. I was not so much moved by the adventures of Phelps, partly because he was over-hyped and partly because there was no thrill in seeing him win again and again.

As far as Indian participation is concerned, this seems to be our best olympics so far. I hope they improve on this rather than just live with the pride. In fact, I would have been happier if the Government had established 6 sports academies instead of 6 new IITs. We already have enough so-called engineers and I have always felt that progress demands a nation to venture into areas where they are lacking. I just wish common sense prevails and sports academies/institutes are established in future.

Broadcast by Doordarshan (DD) was pathetic to say the least. The presenters kept on talking for hours instead of showing the feed they received from olympics. They had placed a small TV between the presenters which showed the live games. The problem was that one could not even see the score and other details from that TV. I almost lost my patience every time they took long time to switch to the feed in the small TV near them. Hindi and English commentaries provided by DD for all the matches were ultimate torture. They could have just left us with the original commentaries which came with the feed.

There was Men's singles tennis semifinals going on between Nadal and Djokovic which was being fiercely fought. It was shown in the small TV betweeen the presenters. I was glued to the presenters and was waiting for them to switch to the match feed. But they kept speaking arbitrary things and started showing a recorded programme on Indian participation in Olympics with Suresh Kalmadi which bored the viewers. They did not show the tennis match till the end.

This is just an example of not utilising the full resource even when it is completely available. There were some reporters from DD who were in Beijing who kept appearing every now and then. They were very bad in communication and presentation skills and were pretty old. I just wonder whether they were selected to go to Beijing on the basis of some quota.