2018 Olympics: The Facts, Favorite Moments & What it Means to Our Social Media Driven Society

On February 9, 2018, the 2018 Winter Olympic games kicked off in PyeongChang, South Korea. The games took the Internet by storm, trending on Twitter and Instagram alike, and showed the world that social media and the internet are continuing to shape and be a conversational driver in our world.

Over 2,900 athletes competed in 102 events, in fifteen unique sports. The entirety of these events included: alpine skiing, biathlon, bobsleigh, cross-countryskiing, curling, figure skating, freestyle skiing, ice hockey, luge, nordic combined, short track speed skiing, skeleton, ski jumping, snowboarding and speed skating.

95 teams competed and six nations  made their Winter Olympics debut. These nations included:  Ecuador, Eritrea, Kosovo, Malaysia, Nigeria and Singapore. Russia was not permitted to compete as a country during these games, due to the doping scandal that took place during the 2014 Sochi Olympics. Athletes from Russia were permitted to compete individually in PyeongChang , but only after they had undergone a series of additional drug tests.   

The latest controversy surrounding the doping scandal, according to NBColympics.com, broke February 19, with the shocking news of Russian Olympic curler, Alexander Krushelnitsky, was charged with illegal doping.  Krushelnitsky and his partner Anastasia Bryzgalova secured the bronze medal the week prior to allegations. In a report published by RT.com, the Olympian claimed that he was not purposely using the drug, but made claimed that an ex-girlfriend had spiked his drink in order to sabotage him. 

Norway had dominated the games , securing a total of 39 combined gold, silver and bronze medals. In a close second with 31 combined medals, was Germany followed by Canada with 29. The United States finished strong in fourth place with a total of 23 medals. 

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(Picture Courtesy of Time.com) 

The games came to a close on February 25, after 16 days of events. History has been made and here at Pursue and Persuade we have taken to Twitter and the Internet, and have chosen some of our favorite moments, historic and not, during the games. 

“The Kiss Seen Around The World” 

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(picture courtesy of twitter/90sKidMutant)

Though team USA Skier, Gus Kenworthy, lost his final race, the silver medalist secured a victory for members of the LGBQT community. On international television, live on NBC, Kenworthy shared an intimate embrace with boyfriend Matthew Wilkas. 

Twitter users from across the globe, took to the internet to voice their admiration and praises to Kenworthy’s brave gesture. 

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(Pictures courtesy of Twitter)

Kenworthy stated that he hopes his kiss would bring ease and hope to others within the LGBTQ and Olympic Community as per Pink News.

"Don’t Sleep on Red Gerard"

In a comical twist of events, an over-sleeping, obscenity dropping 17-year-old snowboarder brought home the first gold medal for the U.S.

According to Business Insider, In the most millennial way, Gerard had overslept during to a late night Netflix binge, and had consequently woke up late as a result.  Aside from waking up late, Gerard could not locate his jacket, and was forced to borrow his roommates'.

Despite oversleeping, Gerard was un-phased and gave an impeccable performance. In a report from Vanity Fair, while waiting for his score, Gerard is heard on international television muttering first, “oh, God, this is scary” and once his final score is revealed, following it with a “What the f***?” and a “Holy S***!” 

Twitter users from all walks of life took to the app to share their love of the adorable millennial.

(Pictures Courtesy of Twitter)

17 Sassy, Snowboarder, Most Relatable Olympian Ever

Seventeen year old, American, snowboarders have stolen the hearts of our country and the internet during this Olympics. 

Chloe Kim, became the youngest woman to ever win a medal after her incredible half pipe performance. Aside from her amazing snowboarding skills, Kim has effectively swooned the internet through her hysterical, relatable tweets. Below are some of our personal favorites.  
 

(Image Courtesy of Twitter) 

On average, 19.8 million people tuned in to watch the 2018 Winter Games. According to recode.com, this is down 7% from the last Winter Games. Other statistics stated that only two of the days, were more popular in regards to viewership in comparison to the Sochi games. The closing ceremonies, were the least watched on record.

Social media, on the contrary, stole the show during these games. Users could stream specific  events on Facebook, and the use of hashtags and other interactive content were able to connect Olympic viewers across the globe instantaneously.

So what does this mean overall? Our society internationally is continuing the trend of moving towards an internet dominated world. TV was once the number one medium for audiences across the globe, but social media has snatched the spotlight. Social media can be accessed by virtually anyone, anywhere, while TV is slowly falling in the ranks due to the lack of accessibility.

Brand should  obviously take note of this rising trend. The Olympics has proven that TV advertising and promotion, with declining viewership, is becoming increasingly ineffective. We live in a digital world, and advertising should be making the much needed shift to social media to ensure maximum effectiveness.

Brands can take advantage of trending topics during events and gain notoriety with minimal effort. During Red Gerard’s historic win, Vice gave updates on his progress and quirky, quick statistics that earned them over 17,000 favorites and 4,700 likes. This shows that even simplest comments, can gain a brand notoriety and that anyone can join the conversation and be heard.

The Olympics may have come to close February 25, but their impact on social media and society continues on. The historic moments for United States athletes and the strides made in the global community, shows that even though are world is constantly at turmoil, we can put our differences aside for healthy competition. See you in Tokyo in 2020!

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