An Ol' Broad's Ramblings
The US television broadcaster NBC was at the centre of controversy last night after it persuaded Twitter to suspend an Independent journalist who criticised its coverage of the Olympics.
Guy Adams, this newspaper’s Los Angeles correspondent, was removed from the social networking site on the day that he wrote a news story detailing widespread public complaints about the network’s coverage of the London Games.
I use to be an avid Olympic watcher, but that was before it was no longer an amateur competition. Once they brought in the professionals…that was pretty much it for me. I still like watching the opening ceremonies, well, except this year’s socialist fiasco, and some of the events still hold some interest, but other than that….I could really care less. It’s all gotten too dadburn political….even for me.
According to Twitter, he was suspended for a message posted during the Opening Ceremony, when NBC prevented viewers of America from watching live coverage, so that the network could screen the occasion during an evening prime-time slot coveted by advertisers. “The man responsible for NBC pretending the Olympics haven’t started yet is Gary Zenkel,” wrote Mr Adams. “Tell him what * think!” His tweet then contained the work email address of Mr Zenkel, the President of NBC Olympics.
Twitter claimed last night that the tweet breached its guidelines.
“Your account has been suspended for posting an individual’s private information such as private email address, physical address, telephone number, or financial documents,” the company informed Mr Adams. “It is a violation of the Twitter Rules.”
Does NBC have a controlling interest in Twitter? I thought it was a program developed by some guy, and his family was involved…or some such thing. Can’t remember now. Posting corporate email addresses is against their rules? Then someone better tell all the political types as well, and have their accounts suspended.
Now, to be perfectly honest, I can understand the delay of the opening ceremony. There is a, what….6 hour difference, and most folk are at work during that time. Perhaps if they had done real time, we wouldn’t have been subjected to the nonstop commercials. (For those who were unable to watch it in real time, NBC could have repeated it later, right?) It was the WORST coverage of an Olympic opening I’ve ever seen. And I’m not talking about the content of the ceremony itself, I’m talking about the chopped up presentation by NBC!
“Either way, [it's] quite worrying that NBC, whose parent company is an Olympic sponsor, is apparently trying (and, in this case, succeeding) in shutting down the Twitter accounts of journalists who are critical of their Olympic coverage.”
News of the suspension sparked tens of thousands of angry messages on Twitter, including comments supportive of Mr Adams from BBC journalist Jeremy Vine, and Piers Morgan, the former editor of the Daily Mirror who now works for CNN. The novelist Irvine Welsh posted the the following comment online: “The Guy Adams twitter ban illustrates three tendencies of hegemonic power; 1) hates criticism, 2) takes itself seriously 3) no sense of fun,” tweeted.
Well, I’m not a journalist. To be honest, there are so few real journalist left, it’s hard to say who is what, but if NBC is going to push for suspension of Twitter accounts of those who are critical of their Olympic coverage, or for any reason, actually….we DO still have a 1st Amendment, don’t we?….then they might as well suspend mine too, cuz I’m criticizing NBC’s totally sucky coverage as well. But then, I rarely get on Twitter anymore, so honestly, I don’t give a flip.
In a statement, NBC said: “We filed a complaint with Twitter because a user tweeted the personal information of one of our executives.”
Sorry NBC….that’s total caca de toro! Every single one of your execs has the SAME email address… @nbcuni.com. The only difference is the names that are before. Took me all of 3 minutes to look ‘em up!
Oh, and seriously….the coverage of the events…..do the commentators have marbles in their mouths? I’m not watching much, but there are a few events I still enjoy. Well, no more. I couldn’t understand a damn thing those clowns were saying about the participant, or the event. I had NO idea what was going on, why the crowds were cheering. How about getting a couple of professionals to comment, and a new sound guy wouldn’t hurt either!