FanDuel - WFBC

February 13, 2006

The Agony of Defeat.: Lots of crashes on the luge track for the women. Also mentioned in the men's coverage was a training run crash by Gold Medalist Zoeggler, and the 52 year old Venezuelan competitor. I understand not showing horrific NFL hits so that players aren't tempted to engange in undue violence to get camera coverage, but it seems something happened to the old Wide World Of Sports style Agony of Defeat moments. I understand the respect for privacy in an especially bad accident, perhaps like the one described in the link. But it seems to me that once upon a time, footage of Zoeggler's crash in training would have been shown before each of his runs. Is NBC hurting their ratings by not indulging the morbid curiosity factor?

posted by rainbaby to other at 02:55 PM - 18 comments

I hate to see anyone crash in any event. Two downhill women skiers crashed and had to be hospitalized. NBC isn't going to show anything because it is politically correct not to. Would it help their ratings to show them? I doubt it. The Olympics isn't a ratings grabber any way. Maybe they need restrictor plates to slow down.

posted by dbt302 at 03:13 PM on February 13

While I don't want to see anyone assisted from an accident, I wonder if a policy of not showing less horrible spills gives the illusion that these sports are as easy as the elite atheletes make them appear.

posted by rainbaby at 03:19 PM on February 13

There were a LOT of crashes in the women's luge event. I can't speak for NBC, but most of the crashes were shown here on CBC because, really, it's part of the event. You can't ignore it. It's not a ratings grabber (this is women's luge, afterall!), but it is a part of the story and just ignoring it in your coverage doesn't really give you the whole story. I guess it's easy to pick and choose what to show and what not to show when you show practically nothing live anyway. I've been watching the Olympics for 18 years, and through all of those I've always been baffled by American coverage.

posted by mkn at 03:35 PM on February 13

NBC is right not to show anything its to respect that person and there family good for them not to care about ratings at a time where they shouldnt "It would hurt ratings if they did i think"

posted by sirtt22 at 03:36 PM on February 13

I can't speak for NBC, but most of the crashes were shown here on CBC because, really, it's part of the event. You can't ignore it. My thoughts before they could coalesce. Crashing is part of the sport. Hiding it, save someone being impaled by his or her ski pole or a runner, is dishonest.

posted by wfrazerjr at 03:40 PM on February 13

Being a skateboarder, I don't think a skate video is complete without a 'slam section'. Nothing gives you more respect for an athlete than seeing what happens when things do not go right. Unless there is death or dismemberment then the crashes should be shown.

posted by njsk8r20 at 04:06 PM on February 13

NBC is showing some pretty bad stuff right now. Ouch! Well, for two minutes, anyway.

posted by NoMich at 07:12 PM on February 13

It goes back to what mkn said, the spills were shown on CBC as they were broadcasting live. What I have seen of the NBC coverage (very little truthfully) is feel-good puff pieces about the athletes, travelogue CHamber of Commerce bits, and the performances of US athletes... Not what I would expect from a supposedly world-class sports organization, but then, perhaps they aren't selling the sports afterall, which would explain the lack of coverage of what happened... They probably wont show the wonderful heart shown by the silver medal-winning Zhang D. either, as her fall was truly gruesome to watch.

posted by elovrich at 07:36 PM on February 13

Yep, NoMitch, they showed some stuff. I guess they used the tape delay to make an assesment and a decision, I can understand that.

posted by rainbaby at 07:48 PM on February 13

some of the editing may be due to time constraints as well. back when they showed every gruesome spill it seemed like there weren't quite as many events to cover. i seem to remember them showing Zoeggler's crash briefly, as well as a pretty wicked crash by the american skier not named bode miller (too lazy to look up his name right now). but they didn't dwell on either of them. i'm sure if there's another herman maier-like event (well-known athlete who takes a nasty spill and comes back to win gold) they would cover it more. the fact that it was luge and it was during a practice run may have been why they didn't show it as much.

posted by goddam at 08:23 PM on February 13

Well, NBC's got a slideshow of the worst women's luge crash on their web site. Maybe they just figure that the real sickos went right to their computers. (She's OK, apparently, by the way.)

posted by Amateur at 08:32 PM on February 13

I think NBC, like most networks, were waiting to find out the extent of injuries before putting the crashes on TV. Just my .02c

posted by stockman at 07:00 AM on February 14

You really don't get an appreciation for how crazy some of these sports are until you see a wipeout. The athletes are so good they make things like that snowboarding half-pipe look easy. When one of the competitors slammed the side, the speed and momentum they build up was a lot easier to see. I understand not showing horrific NFL hits so that players aren't tempted to engange in undue violence to get camera coverage ... Say what? NFL broadcasters play hard hits back in slow motion. Hits like the Byron Sandwich in Indy this year are played up to the hilt.

posted by rcade at 07:10 AM on February 14

Speaking of agony, did anyone see that replay of the figure skaters where the guy dropped the girl on her face. OUCH! It happened last year in Pittsburgh but they showed the replay right before they did thier program last night.

posted by njsk8r20 at 07:37 AM on February 14

I used to live north enough to watch the CBC. The olympic coverage is far better up there! In america we only get to watch American athletes. If we are not in the medal round, we don't get to see the sport. The Canadiens obviously focus on there athletes too, but at least if it is a great event, and it is the medal round... they will show it even if no Canadiens made it in. That is pretty classy olympic coverage if you ask me.

posted by RadioZombie at 08:57 AM on February 14

I also watch my Olympic coverage on CBC, maybe it's because I spend alot of time in Canada for work. (Have to have my Timís every morning too!) Sometimes I watch the news on CBC & always tune in for Hockey night in Canada, every since I was a kid. Now my kids tune in with me, on Saturday night, unless they are playing. The coverage is just better & mostly not tape delayed. It seams that replays have also gone PC too, make it stop. I just can't get used to saying the shroud of Torino though!

posted by directpressure at 09:41 AM on February 14

So in the end, this post is complaining about NBC censoring something they actually showed in primetime? Personally, I thought the ice skating fall by the Chinese girl looked way more painful. And that got a couple of slow-mo replays.

posted by Smackfu at 09:54 AM on February 14

Regarding what the networks show where, I was in French Polynesia several years ago, and the French Open was on. They were showing mostly the French players. Broadcasts are nearly always taylored to the people who're watching. True enough about NBC and tape delay, and not showing the grit of what the athletes go through.

posted by drtherc at 11:20 AM on February 14

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