Olympic Broadcast Media Consortium plans cross-platform coverage

The London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) today showcases prototypes of the London 2012 Olympic Torch to be carried by 8,000 inspirational Torchbearers.The winning design connects the London 2012 Olympic Torch Relay to each of the 8,000 Torchbearers and their community. The Torch's triangular, gold-coloured form is perforated by 8,000 circles representing the 8,000 Torchbearers and their stories of personal achievement and/or contribution to their local community which will be celebrated during the London 2012 Olympic Torch Relay.

They’ll be lighting the Olympic flame next month in London, not Vancouver and Whistler, as at the 2010 Winter Games.

But Canada’s Olympic Broadcast Media Consortium in July plans a record 5,500 hours of coverage – or more than 229 days of content – during the 17 days of the 2012 London Olympic Games, on mobile phones, tablets, laptops and, of course, TV sets.

“With the time difference being five hours, with the summer time period, when people are out and on-the-go, to having 26 sports, which is almost three times what was available at the winter games — all of the factors will provide the opportunity for us to intersect with consumers on the go, to deliver live and on-demand video on their terms,” Adam Ashton, president of Canada’s Olympic Broadcast Media Consortium, tells Playback Daily.

The Summer 2012 Games coverage will be broken down into over 2000-plus hours of TV programming, and another 3500-plus hours of digital coverage.

The round-the-clock coverage on the main CTV network includes morning live sports coverage from 4 a.m. daily, day-time and primetime coverage, followed by an overnight midnight to 4 a.m. encore presentation of the Olympic primetime programming.

That’s on top of the blanket Olympic coverage on the RDS, TSN, Sportsnet and V channels, on another ten Rogers radio stations, and social media links like www.ctvolympics and facebook.com/ctvolympics.

“When you get up in the morning, if you’re in front of a computer or TV, you’ll have a great amount of choice, and throughout the day if you’re on your smartphone, you can log on through an app or website to www.ctvolympics.ca, which is one-stop shopping for all-things Olympics online,” Ashton said.

The consortium topper said the wide breadth of content on offer at the 2012 Summer Games is a blessing in that it meets consumer demand.

“Having the content available across all the platforms, so people can view it more often, and longer, is a good thing. If you miss a highlight or an event, you can watch it later,” Ashton explains.

At the same time, Canadian viewers need to be able to find the cross-platform content and easily engage with it.

“Simplicity is key. When we’re talking about 5,500 of coverage, we have to make it simple so people know and understand where to get the content,” he says.

Photo: London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games

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WIFT-T Crystal Awards 2014 - CBC Business of Broadcasting Mentorship Recipient Courtney Graham with Michelle Daly backstage at the 2014 WIFT-T Crystal Awards. Credit: Eduardo Perez