The Winter Olympic 2014 games in Sochi, Russia kicked off on February 7th. This winter, millions will flock to Russia to watch the games, but for those that are stuck at home, what can you do to stay connected? The growth of social media even since the last Olympic games in 2012 have drastically altered how we stay connected to events on live television. It seems every large event is constantly breaking social media records for tweets per second, “Like’s” per hour, or whatever metric social media gurus are tracking these days. Wonder what records will be broken this year!
As you enjoy the games and take the time to stay up-to-date on the medal standings, be sure to check out a few of the treasure troves of information available online this winter Olympic season. This is a great chance to participate in the social TV movement.
Google & Google +
Check out the schedule for the Olympic games right from the first page of Google. Find quick links to information about any of the current events right in the schedule as well. I’m sure Google will find some other ways to keep users on the main search page, so look for additional information right on Google results as the games continue.
We recommend following hashtags like: #Sochi #Olympics #sochiolympics #sochi2014 #teamUSA #winterolympics #sochiwinterolympics #WinterOlympicGames2014. Seriously, could there be any more? Don’t forget to check out the interesting hashtags as well. My favorite? #SochiProblems.
- Join the conversation on the Official Olympics Facebook Page
- Don’t forget to also check out the Official Sochi Olympics 2014 Facebook Page
- Cheer on the US Olympic team
- Support the Paralympic Games
- Follow #Sochi2014 coverage on Facebook
- Or try #seeyouinsochi
- Ooo and awww the polar bear, hare and leopard Sochi 2014 Olympic Mascots on their page
- Play Sochi 2014 Olympic Games Resort on Facebook
The social discussion doesn’t end on Facebook and Google, check out twitter for additional information in 140 characters or less. Twitter is partnering up with NBC to populate their Sochi Olympics event page with @NBCOlympics most compelling tweets. Experts are expecting huge spikes in tweeting throughout the games. Compelling data compiled by Twitter will also be shared through this partnership with NBC. Check out some other ways to stay connected on Twitter:
- Read the #Sochi2014 or #Olympics feed
- You can open the fire hose and search for any sochi related references in tweets
- Follow @Sochi2014 the official Sochi 2014 twitter account or @Olympics for additional coverage
- Browse Twit pics as they are uploaded to the @Sochi2014 Twitter account
- Follow your favorite winter athletes like Phil Kessel (@PKessel81), Ted Ligety (@tedligety), Shani Davis (@ShaniDavis) or Shaun White (@Shaun_White).
- Check out a few twitter lists like this list of verified Olympian accounts.
Best Olympic Apps (iPhone and Android)
App developers have been busy building fully integrated Olympic apps for fans to enjoy. Below are ten good apps to check out on both Android and iOS platforms. Get alerts while you’re at work out out and about. Never miss a moment of coverage!
- Sochi 2014 Guide (free iPhone)
- Sochi 2014 Wireless Olympic Works (free Android)
- NBC Sports Live Extra (free iPhone)
- Sochi 2014 Results (free iPhone)
- Sochi Winter Games Calendar (free Android)
- Olympic Athlete’s Hub (free iPhone)
- 2014 Team USA Road to Sochi (free)
- Medal Alert (free iPhone)
Instagram and Flickr
Image sharing sites like Instragram and Flickr are the perfect way to stay in touch with what’s going on in Sochi. First, start off by following all of team USA’s olympian athletes. Here’s a complete list of team USA instagram accounts by AllFacebook.com. Next follow @TeamUSA and @USParalympics as well. Finally, check out the Sochi 2014 Winter Games photostream on Flickr to see the photo diary of the torch relay or official photos from the Olympic games. There’s bound to be a few photos that will keep you up to date on everything at Sochi, powerful images of athletes as they compete and fans as they watch.
Even More Ways to Connect!
The real “official” group of the Olympic and Paralympic Winter games can actually be found on Russia’s own popular social network VK. VK.com is the second largest social networking service in Europe, behind Facebook. Olympic Officials in charge of the Sochi games are spending a lot of time socially on the network and recommend checking there first for important updates. For those of you without time to brush up on your Russian visit http://vk.com/sochi2014 in a Chrome browser and Google translate will translate the page for you.
There are still many of us out there who live and die by our RSS feeds. Grab the RSS feed for Sochi 2014 and be the first to know when a breaking story is published, metal standings are announced, etc… Other worthwhile newsfeeds to check out:
- Olympic.org Olympic Committee Coverage RSS Feed
- Yahoo Sports Olympic RSS Feed
- Google News Olympic Coverage RSS Feed
- ESPN Olympic Coverage RSS Feed
Catching replays and video from the winter games can help you feel like you’re right near the action. Youtube is the best place to catch up on coverage from the games, interviews with the athletes and behind the scenes coverage. Watch videos on the Olympic Youtube Page, on the NBC Olympic coverage channel, team USA’s channel and the Paralympic Games official page. Fans can comment with each other and subscribe to multiple channels for optimum viewing pleasure.
Did we miss any? Feel free to suggest resources to catch all the Olympics has to offer this winter!