sold. Advances in " geo- blocking" and anti- piracy techniques allowed the IOC to guarantee exclusive digital rights within these countries. Such significant shifts in the media landscape mean, of course, that the Olympic Movement's existing models for managing media rights may no longer be appropriate. " This is the beginning of the creation of a model for digital rights which are complementary to the television broadcast. The experience from Beijing was about the quality of delivery, which was immersive, engaging and interactive," says Timo Lumme, Director, IOC Television and Marketing Services. As part of any assessment of how the Olympic Movement should consider reviewing its sports rights management policies, it is important to consider the exact extent to which the digital ? OLYMPIC REVIEW51 OLYMPIC CONGRESS O ver the past decade and a half, technological advances - most notably in digital technology - have revolutionised how sports images are beamed across the world. Television - once the sole medium through which international audiences viewed major sporting events - has now been joined by PC screens, PDAs ( personal digital assistants) and mobile phones as viable platforms, thanks to ever-improving internet reach and bandwidth. Beijing 2008 was the first Olympic Games to have full digital coverage available around the world, with rights- holding broadcasters providing images via the internet and mobile phones. The IOC also launched its own internet channel - " Beijing 2008" - to broadcast video highlights to territories where video- on- demand highlights rights had not been THEDIGITAL REVOLUTION Above Technological advances have transformed the way that people communicate with each other THEME 5
52OLYMPIC REVIEW OLYMPIC CONGRESS revolution has already influenced how rights- holders broadcast the Games - both in beneficial and less beneficial terms. Digital developments afford fantastic potential for reviewing how images should be transmitted, not to mention exploring more diverse and targeted ways of delivering content to different types of audience ( particularly powerful in the quest to reignite the younger generation's interest in competitive sports). Key areas of consideration for the IOC will be whether or not it should develop new Games- related content in order to boost viewer numbers and broaden the audience scope. One obvious benefit of digital media could be that through making content available through so many different channels, it effectively increases airtime, giving viewers and internet users greater access to the many different events that take place during the Olympic Games. A further benefit of the digital revolution is that it provides greater and varied opportunities for communication with the different bodies and stakeholders of the Olympic Movement, including the IOC, IFs, NOCs, athletes, OCOGs, commercial and non- commercial partners and media. The question now for the Olympic Movement is how it can best take advantage of digital developments to better serve its myriad of stakeholders. With regards to the media, as platform convergence becomes increasingly commonplace ( how many of us now own Blackberrys or iPhones that enable a combination of web surfing, email access and television streaming?), what are the ramifications for the specific media types ( news agencies, print press, moving- images, internet)? And how should the IOC be responding to these changes to ensure the best, most effective and widespread transmission of Games content? These are big but fascinating questions, and ones that through careful consideration can only result in bringing the Games to increasing numbers of viewers in the most appropriate, targeted and engaging ways possible. ¦ No- río Yamanoi " IT IS NOT JUST ABOUT BRINGING IN EXTREME SPORTS - IT IS IN THE MEDIATION OF ALL SPORTS IN YOUTH- FRIENDLY, ENGAGING AND DIGITAL PLATFORMS. THE IOC NEEDS TO ENSURE THE IPOD GENERATION ARE TUNING IN, NOT TUNING OUT"