The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has countered criticism of its social media guidelines by creating a host of accounts specifically for the London 2012 games.
Both ‘The Athletes Hub’ - http://hub.olympic.org/ - a collection of all Facebook and twitter updates from past and present athletes, and ‘Inside the Village’ - http://hubqa.fanappz.com:8480/london2012/index - a place where fans can enter live Q+A’s with athletes, are already available.
The ‘Olympic Challenge’ will launch early next week. It will use Facebook’s open graph to award points to those who can predict event outcomes and medal winners.
Tumblr and Instagram accounts are also on the way, as our FourSquare and Google+ accounts, all dedicated to the London 2012 games.
Alex Huot, the IOC’s head of social media told ANCHORFAN: “Social media is an important connector between fans and athletes.
“The London 2012 Olympics will be truly social and fun. We are at a dawn of a new age of sharing and connecting, and London 2012 will ignite the first conversational games [between athletes and fans.”
Double-Amputee Oscar Pistorius, who is the first Paralympian to compete at the able-bodied Olympics told the IOC: “Social media has been a great way to connect with fans and share not just my stories, but the stories other amazing people and athletes.”
Six-time British Olympian Allison Williamson said: “When I went to the Games for the first time in 1992, there was an internal e-mail system and it was groundbreaking. In London I will be sharing photos direct from the athlete’s village. I hope everyone enjoys these Games.”
As well as the increased social media options, the IOC have relaxed rules on fans who take video/photo/audio during the games and then re-post them on social media.
They wanted to prevent companies from gaining commercially out of the Olympics but assure fans that. although they would prefer not to see videos posted on social media, they would only seek punishment in the most extreme cases.
The move comes after recently released social media guidelines for athletes, were criticised as old-fashioned and out-of-touch.
But it seems the IOC took the criticism on board and want to create a link between fans and athletes via social media.