Social Media

The US is witnessing a quadrennial surge of interest in the sport of complaining about NBC’s approach of saving the best Olympic action until primetime, writes Andrew Edgecliffe-Johnson.

Figures from operators of virtual private networks suggest that viewers who cannot wait until 11pm to see Usain Bolt and do not have the pay-television subscription needed to see live footage on NBC’s web and mobile services have been looking elsewhere.

Expat Shield, a VPN that provides UK web addresses to overseas residents enabling them to view BBC broadcasts that would otherwise be blocked, reports that installations from the US shot up from an average of 250 a day before the Olympics began to 4,900 a day in the first week of the games. Read more

Walking along the South Bank I saw a surprising sight: a man and a woman daring to venture out in broad daylight clad head to toe in Spain’s garish Olympic kit, with not even a blush, writes Carola Long.

For anyone who missed the furore over Spain’s cut price garb here’s why one might have expected them to stuff their red and yellow tracksuits back in their lockers before leaving the Olympic village.

Bosco, the Russian sportswear brand, provided the kits, saving the Spanish government  €1.5m according to Alejandro Blanco, chairman of the Spanish Olympic Committee. Blanco claimed a fiscal victory — given Spain’s ailing economy — but the designs were widely deemed a style defeat. Read more

Just over half-way through there can be little doubt that the 2012 London Olympics has given Brand Britannia a very big boost, at least qualitatively, writes Sir Martin Sorrell.

Arguments may rage over the quantitative benefit. Will the legacy justify the £9bn infrastructure investment? Will consumer and tourist spending be enhanced to the tune of £850m, as Visa, a major Olympic sponsor suggests? Will advertising and marketing spending be boosted beyond the normal and the £750m predicted?

Whatever the relative strengths of these arguments, there is no doubt the intangible benefits have been considerable in many ways so far.

 Read more

Tom Daley practicing at the Aquatic Centre during previews for the London Olympic games. (Photo by Paul Gilham/Getty Images)

Police have arrested a 17-year-old in Weymouth, Dorset, on suspicion of sending “malicious communications” to the British diver Tom Daley.

The communications in question were alleged Tweets which Daley said he had been sent after he and Pete Waterfield failed to win a medal in the 10m synchronised diving competition.

The first tweet, which the diver retweeted to his 792,000 followers on the social media site, told Daley: “You let your dad down i hope you know that.”

Daley’s father died of brain cancer last year and the 18-year-old diver had said he was inspired by that loss to try to win an Olympic medal.

On the face of it, while grossly offensive and showing a lack of taste and decency which no human being could be proud of, that Tweet would not merit prosecution. After all, many public figures receive offensive Tweets all the time. You only have to look at some of the messages sent to leading business figures such as @rupertmurdoch, who choose to inhabit the Twittersphere. Read more

London 2012 supremo Lord Coe opened a can of worms recently with a warning that anyone seeking to enter an Olympic venue wearing a Pepsi t-shirt could be turned away on the grounds that rival Coca Cola is the games’ official sponsor.

But can an advert for an egg-and-spoon race contravene the Olympics’ strict rules on branding and constitute ambush marketing? Yes, according to London’s Olympic organising committee (Locog). Read more