Tuesday, August 12, 2008

How much am I loving the Olympics?

This post is a bit overdue, but you see there's been an astonishing thing happening. The BBC is broadcasting women.... da da da daaaaa.... playing sport.

This is unprecedented. If there's one thing that rankles with me about the UK, it's the rubbish coverage newspapers and broadcaster give to women playing sport. Mind you, at least we have plenty of health and lifestyle pages berating us for not being fitter, sexier, more maternal, more ambitious and generally ordinary everyday goddesses.

So I am especially happy to see Nicole Cooke (cycling) and Rebecca Adlington (400m freestyle) winning gold medals and Jo Jackson winning a bronze (400m freestyle). Their ecstatic podium smiles have been incredibly uplifting. It's taken four days for the guys to get off the starting blocks, but bless, even David Florence (silver in canoeing) has got a pretty name.

I have a lot to say on this subject, but I've just found someone who says it better. Have a read of Kira Cochrane for all the statistics about the dearth of women's sports coverage.

This article appeared in The Guardian, which is funny because I've written two letters to The Guardian over the last couple of years on this subject. Yup - I am that kind of letter writer.

Sadly, it's all been to no effect. For as long as football and newspapers feed off each other in their weird obsessive, compulsive manner, UK sports editors will continue not to care about women's sport. Though - irony upon irony - my last letter even referred to the lack of coverage given to Britain's hugely successful women cyclists in their world championships...

7 comments:

gigi said...

You go girl! You keep writing those letters! The Olimpics have been so fun to watch! Hope your man and everyone else is feeling better!

Amanda said...

Wonder how the childminder felt about the potty training??? Olympics, schlympics who cares about that when we are right smack dab in the middle of a good potty story.

Sorry, that's probably not the right attitude to have.

breadchick said...

Oh it isn't just the BBC that suffers this malady. Except for when either the US Women's football/soccer team is in the finals of the World Cup (and removing articles of clothing as celebration) and/or it is either bowling or women's college basketball, we have a lack of television coverage here as well. Title 9 be damned...

This Olympics I did however notice that the American channel Oxygen is showing 2 hours of women-centric events: equestrian, gymnastics, and swimming as well as a few other lessor seen sports like shooting and fencing.

scrappysue said...

i'm a letter writer too sass! lack of coverage for female sports is the same here. it's all rugby, rugby, rugby. the men lost the world cup and our female rugby women's team WON the world cup, but was there any live coverage - coverage at all??? the netball is the only thing we see on prime time and i have to wonder if they weren't semi hot and wearing short dresses, would we see any at all. i watched that cycle road race and nicole's sprint to the finish. what a race - spectacular. the first we saw of her was sprinting home - absolutely fantastic.

MamaGeek said...

I'm with ya! I fear I'm going to OD on the olympics.

Fat, frumpy and fifty... said...

you've written what lve been thinking....thanks!!
thought about you at the weekend whilst with my folks...perhpaps next time?
saz

Reluctant Housewife said...

And Canada has yet to win a medal. Sigh.