The International Olympic Committee (IOC) today introduced new social media programs that are making the London 2012 Summer Olympics the most social and tech-savvy Olympics ever.
“The Athletes’ Hub has already compiled Twitter and Facebook feeds of over 2,000 verified Olympians. The additions we are announcing today further demonstrate the IOC’s continued efforts to socialize the Olympic Games and create a better, more engaging experience for fans and Olympic athletes around the world”
The Olympic Athletes’ Hub is an online destination that aggregates the Twitter and Facebook streams of Olympic athletes, past and present. Leading up to the London 2012 Games, a new page has been added to the Hub that will take fans “Inside the Olympic Village”. This new page will include a live Athlete Q&A that allows athletes in Olympic Village to chat directly with fans through the Hub.
Also new is “Faces of Olympians”, a collaboration between the IOC and Instagram that will showcase a collection of athlete photos taken throughout the London Games. Olympians in the Athletes’ Village will be photographed as they pose with their best “Olympic Face” and photos will be tagged @facesofolympian and displayed through the Faces tab on the Hub.
The IOC will soon launch the Olympic Challenge in the Athletes’ Hub, a social game that will allow fans to compete with their friends and other fans to make predictions about events occurring at the London 2012 games. Each day during the Olympics, fans can predict the outcome of various Olympic events and see how they rank on the leaderboard against their friends and fans around the world. The Olympic Challenge is integrated with Facebook and the Open Graph, allowing Facebook users to share their predictions with their friends and encourage social competition.
Other features that have been added to the Hub include real time tickers that will show which Tweets and Athletes are trending on the Hub.
“The Athletes’ Hub has already compiled Twitter and Facebook feeds of over 2,000 verified Olympians. The additions we are announcing today further demonstrate the IOC’s continued efforts to socialize the Olympic Games and create a better, more engaging experience for fans and Olympic athletes around the world,” said Mark Adams, Director of Communications for the International Olympic Committee.
In addition, the following social media integrations are in development:
- The IOC has generated more than 30,000 followers on Instagram in only 60 days. The account is growing exponentially as we head towards the Opening Ceremony. Follow @olympics and @facesofolympian for real time Tumblr feeds and Faces of Olympians notifications.
- The IOC’s Tumblrblogs (coming soon) will provide a bridge between the Olympics mobile and online experiences. Olympic-related Tumblr blogs will include:
- olympics.tumblr.com – An aggregation of various existing social feeds
- facesofolympians.tumblr.com – Live from inside the Athletes’ Village, real-time photo feed from the Instagram Faces of Olympians campaign.
- olympicmoments.tumblr.com – Photos from Getty Images
- olympicfashion.tumblr.com – Follow Olympic fashion in this live feed which will include colorful photos and commentary.
- Looking for tickets to Olympic events? Check-in to off-site venues on foursquare for a special badge called the “Olympic Ticket” and a chance to win free tickets every day. You can also win free tickets by taking part in a photo contest on the Olympics Facebook page, beginning 26 July.
- Connect with teams, athletes and friends and share experiences from the official Olympics Games page on Google+.
The IOC held a private press event last night in London for tech journalists and athletes, demonstrating these new social media features and integrations. Athletes including Oscar Pistorius (Team South Africa, Athletics) and Allison Williamson (Team GB, Archery, 6-time Olympian) were in attendance.
“Social media has been a great way to connect with fans and share not just my stories but the stories of other amazing people and athletes. I regularly use it to share my experiences and provide inspiration for those who are overcoming obstacles or just need an extra push to remember that hard work pays off. I am truly blessed and thrilled to be participating in the 2012 London Olympics and look forward to sharing my Olympic experiences with the social media community and inspiring young athletes to do amazing things,” said Oscar Pistorius.
“When I went to the Games for the first time it was back in Barcelona in 1992—those games had an internal email system and it was groundbreaking. In London I will be sharing photos of the Athletes’ Village and other fun things. I really hope everyone enjoys these Games,” said Allison Williamson.
Connect with the Olympics worldwide:
- Official Olympics website www.olympic.org
- The Olympics Social Media Hub: www.olympic.org/hub
- The Olympics Twitter: www.twitter.com/Olympics
- The Olympics on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/olympics
- The Olympics on Google+: http://goo.gl/RRrPg
- The Olympics on Instagram (for iPhone or Google Play): @Olympics
- The Olympics on foursquare, visit https://foursquare.com/olympics
- Some Olympians Chafe at IOC’s Social Media Rules (mashable.com)
- IOC goes for social gold with improved Olympics hub and official Instagram, Tumblr accounts (venturebeat.com)