While we are all anxiously waiting to see which events our country wins in the days ahead, the summer Olympics are already breaking records and creating buzz – social media buzz, that is. It’s been four years since the last summer Olympics and in the world of social media and online interaction a lot has changed in those 1,460+ days. Twitter is a household name, Youtube videos go viral in a day and online viewing has increased significantly.
As a result, we are seeing a very different game this time around. For instance, according to Mashable, more tweets about the #olympics are sent daily than during the entire 2008 Olympics combined. Online buzz has been building for basketball player Lebron James, swimmer Michael Phelps and sprinter Usain Bolt. According to a report by Radian6, Lebron James has been mentioned more than 78,000 times in the last 30 days.
And it isn’t just fans and viewers who are diving into the social media world. Athletes are keeping us up to date on their events and training via Twitter messages and Facebook posts. Some estimate that more than two-thirds of the competing US athletes are on Twitter, not to mention Facebook and other social sites. Michael Phelps has posted pictures and up-to-date messages about his races on Facebook. One Olympian hopeful from Greece was even banned from the games after tweeting a racial joke.
And beyond the informative athlete posts, some even had fun building buzz. For example, the US swim team filmed their own version of the often-covered Call Me Maybe. <p>
Follow the athletes on Twitter:
Usain Bolt = @usainbolt
Asafa Powell = @officialasafa
Oscar Pistorius = @oscarpistorius
Lolo Jones = @lolojones
Juan Mata Garcia = @juanmata10
Novak Djokovic = @djokernole
Neymar Junior = @njr92
Dominik Meichtry = @swissdom
Kevin Durant = @kdtrey5
Lebron James = @kingjames
Matthew Mitcham = @matthew_mitcham
Stephanie Rice = @itsstephrice