First “social” Olympics are not the recently opened in London, although many media have tried to convince us they actually are. The use of social networks as we all currently know them was used for the first time back in 2010, for the Vancouver 2010 Winter Games.

The aim then was to provide safe websites where fans could enjoy the event in real time, besides to ensure all of them could have whatever information they were looking up on the Internet about the matter.

However, we have to admit there are a huge difference between the use of social media two years ago and now. Let’s firstly talk about the purpose: this time the IOC and sponsors have focused on targeting young people.

Social media coverage 2010 vs 2012

– An exclusive website to bring together athletes and fans via social media.

– Tight control on information: both, athletes and fans must subscribe to the website in order to take part. That way, the IOC can monitor every single tweet coming from there.

– Strict rules on the use of social networks and blogging.

– New profile on Instagram, where users will find all Olympian faces in order to recognize them all.

– Deals for coverage with Facebook and Twitter

– Much many followers on Twitter (almost as much as double compared with 2010, growing from 600,000 up to around one million)

The next official infographic shows more detail about the history of the Olympics’ media coverage over the years:

Olympics coverage's evolution - Official Infographic

Athlete, do not forget to tweet and blog but… 

“Be careful! You should be training, not tweeting!” This is the common sentiment amongst athletes and mostly trainers. Nevertheless, they have a must-follow manual with all rules regarding social media. It’s like an Olympic Decalogue of social media use:

  1. Your purpose won’t ever be commercial.
  2. Tweets and comments will have to be first-person narrative, with own character and daily format. It’s forbidden to upload information or details about anybody else.
  3. You are not allowed to commercialize with photos taken during the Olympics. However, athletes can post them for a personal use. Video and audio upload are totally forbidden.
  4. You are not allowed to use any of the Olympic symbols, as they are IOC property.
  5. About blog creation, you must use the following domains: www.[myname] or www.[myname].com/olympic
  6. You’ll try to link your blog to the official Olympics website. This is actually an “advice”, not a must-do.
  7. We’ll be watching you… IOC is monitoring every single comment about the Olympics to ensure everything is doing well. On that purpose, as a visitor you can also help in case you see actions against the rules. Where? here ->
  8. Besides all already said, you athlete will have to follow additional instructions coming from your own NOC (National Olympic Committee)
  9. We, IOC, are allowed to chance these rules if needed.
  10. In case of infringements, you and only you will be applied a penalty.

Well, this is not exactly what is written in the manual, but it’s a really close interpretation 😉

Fan? Links to follow the Olympics

What it is clear is that this year we’ll be able to follow better than ever everything our athletes are doing, besides their personalities, their wishes their humanity.

In order to follow up the event, in addition to the official channel in every country where you can see in real time – apart from NBC, where the Opening Ceremony was a prerecorded broadcast – you can get updated information on the official website.

This site offers you the chance to know details about the best-known athletes, such as LeBron JamesKobe BryantRoger Federer or Neymar Jr.

Olympic platforms on social networks

The first social network to make a deal with the IOC was Facebook, almost immediately followed by Twitter, although the two of them are not the only ones:

Facebook platform includes on Timeline the Olympian profiles and let you get direct access to, for example Marc Gasol or Andy Murray‘s profiles. You also have the opportunity to know the whole team of your country or what brands are the sponsors.

On Twitter, follow the official accounts @Olympics or @London2012, as well as the individual athletes’ accounts. This micro-blogging network has developed an amazing campaign together with the London Eye: it’ll turn yellow/violet once a day, depending on the Twitter user’s sentiments.

Finally, you also can follow the event on YouTube, Instagram – using the hashtag #olympics-, Pinterest or even Google+, the last social network to making the deal.

Now, your turn! What way are you following the Olympics? Any social platform to add here? Any tip on what channel we should see the event and what other channel we shouldn’t? As usual, comment below or via our fanpage anything you are thinking of right now about this matter. We are looking forward to your advices!!