Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The World Cup and the media

A short round-up of fun stuff from South Africa:

A couple of rather rude moves by FIFA, the international organization responsible for the World Cup.

Thirty-six female Holland fans were thrown out of their country's game against Denmark at Soccer City after Fifa officials accused them of wearing orange mini-dresses to promote an unlicensed beer brand.

Dutch girls in mini-skirts are definitely a no-no according to FIFA.
Photograph: Andrew Boyers,
courtesy of Action Images

Now that is a low blow, if you ask me. The group were eventually detained for several hours according to agency reports, but no charges were leveled.

According to one source the company behind the "ambush marketing" was the Bavaria brewing company.

North Korea played a respectable game against Brazil, holding the number one rated team scoreless through the first half before eventually surrendering two goals. But the Koreans were able to score one themselves very late in the game to make it two-one at the end.

The team from Brazil were entertaining, as always, and their fans are the most entertaining themselves, bringing joy to any game they attend. But what about the North Korean fans? The reclusive North Korea had 1400 tickets to distribute for the games and word is that they used about one thousand of them to recruit Chinese dancers and musicians to cheer on their side. A few went to carefully recruited North Koreans like Kim Yong Chon, 43, who will be allowed to stay in South Africa only as long as the team does.

NPR did a segment yesterday on social media and the World Cup. You can listen to it here.
NORRIS: Now, I wonder what this is doing to productivity in a lot of workplaces. What have the most popular sites done to prepare for this increase in traffic?

GALLAGA: Well, Twitter, in particular, had a lot of problems last week that were unrelated to the World Cup. They might've been kind of gearing up for it. But they warned their users that this kind of spike in traffic is probably going to cause problems. They're probably going to have some outages. Facebook has fared pretty well, but both sides are doing a lot to just get people talking.

Twitter introduced some hashtags, where if you type in World Cup, it will actually put a little soccer or a team flag on there. So they're definitely trying to get people talking. And Facebook is actually allowing people to comment with live video streams. So they're pairing up - kind of Facebook status updates with those live streams.