Live Olympics action the goal
Nine promises to keep Games viewers up to speed at all times, writes
CHANNEL 9’s head of sport has promised a transparent Olympic Games coverage – vowing that no events will be ‘‘banked’’ for later viewing, and as many sporting moments as possible will be shown live.
Steve Crawley admits, though, that since Nine is only telecasting on one channel, it will be logistically impossible to show live every event with Australian participation. When events clash and a programming decision has to be made, it will be based on the popularity of a sport or ratings potential, Crawley says, adding no event will be ‘‘banked’’ to show at a later time.
‘‘We will not be holding vision back and banking it for hours later,’’ says Crawley.
‘‘We will be live at one thing and then getting to the other event as soon as we can. We will be saying things like ‘moments ago or minutes ago’ when we cross, so viewers know what’s happening.’’
Four years ago, Channel 7 came under fire from Olympic fans for its coverage of the Beijing Games.
It was criticised for delayed broadcasts, not enough live coverage, too many ads and interrupting coverage for an AFL match.
In contrast to Nine, Foxtel has promised to use a ‘‘live’’ bug on screen during its Games coverage, similar to what it displays The Channel 9 team reporting from the Olympics city, Mark Nicholas, Ken Sutcliffe, Leila McKinnon and Cameron Williams. during AFL and NRL matches. Crawley says Nine does not use the ‘‘live’’ bug on its regular sporting events and is not going to start now.
Viewers will be kept up to speed at all times by Nine’s nightly hosts – Karl Stefanovic and Ken Sutcliffe – and delays between sports will be announced.
‘‘We are one channel and we have the ability – and this is what Fox can’t do – to go from one event to another,’’ Crawley says. ‘‘We can duck around from sport to sport and they (Fox) stay with the event from start to finish.’’
Crawley says live events from London would start about 5.30pm each day. When the nightly news aired, viewers could switch to digital channel Gem to continue watching the Olympic action.
Nine, which is showing the Summer Olympics for the first time, will also screen a highlights package, from the previous day’s events, on its 3D Olympic Trial Channel 95, from 11am each day. Opening ceremony, Saturday, 5.30am, Nine, NBN, replay 2pm; Daily action from about 5.30am, Nine, NBN and Foxtel’s London 1-8. 9.20pm, SBS ONE
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