NBC Drops Terrorism Memorial From Opening Ceremony
NBC is getting even more blistering criticism for its Olympics coverage as audiences learn that the network dropped a memorial to victims of terrorism from its broadcast of the opening ceremonies. It aired an interview of Michael Phelps by Ryan Seacrest instead.
The segment of director Danny Boyle‘s extravagant display featured a performance by Scottish singer Emeli Sandé singing “Abide With Me,” as images of the victims of the 2005 London bombings appeared on the stadium screens. (Organizers have not said that the segment was officially a memorial of the July 7 attacks, which occurred just a day after London was announced as the host of the 2012 Olympics. But the BBC commentary and many others have all regarded the performance as a de facto tribute to the victims.)
Interestingly, Olympic organizers faced criticism for refusing to include a moment of silence in the opening ceremony for the Israeli team members killed by a terror attack at the 1972 Munich Olympics.
The performance is now available for viewing online at Deadspin.
NBC has only made their PR situation worse by releasing statements that basically say American audiences can’t handle a live broadcast without NBC interference. According to the LA Times, an NBC spokesperson had this to say:
“It was never our intent to live stream the Opening Ceremony or Closing Ceremony. They are complex entertainment spectacles that do not translate well online because they require context, which our award-winning production team will provide for the large prime-time audiences that gather together to watch them.
Do you think NBC should have broadcast the memorial segment in the opening ceremony?
[via Huffington Post]