Posted August 12, 2012 on AP on Fox
The London Olympics may well be remembered as the event that drove home the power of social media - partly to the chagrin but mostly to the benefit of NBC, which controlled images of the games in the United States. Twitter estimates there were more than 50 million tweets about the Olympics, at a pace of 80,000 per minute after Jamaica's Usain Bolt won the gold medal in the 200-meter sprint. Facebook saw the number of fans of Olympic athletes soar: American gymnast Gabby Douglas had 14,358 followers on July 27 and 540,174 less than two weeks later. All of the activity pumped up interest in the games. NBC executives privately anticipated the London games would have a smaller audience than the Beijing Olympics of 2008. Instead, the network's prime-time audience averaged 31.5 million people a night through Friday, up 12 percent from Beijing. Many factors surely drove interest, like compelling competition and the amount of coverage available on TV and online. Maybe a recession-weary w...
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