NBC might have gotten some bad press for giving away results before showing them tape-delayed in the lucrative hours of prime time. These Olympics have both been the ‘first Social Olympics’ and the Pew Research Center, 76% of Americans find the NBC communications conglomerate’s coverage excellent or good.what such instantaneous communication can mean to corporate and sporting interests. And, as it turns out, most of the griping is coming from the world of social networks. According to the
What are the numbers when age is taken into consideration?
Not surprisingly, younger Americans are watching are more likely to follow the Olympics by ‘non-traditional’ media:
Young people under the age of 30 are much more likely to have followed Olympic coverage on social networking sites than are older Americans. About three-in-ten (31%) of those ages 18-29 have followed coverage on social networking sites like Facebook or Twitter, compared with 11% of those 30-49, 6% of those 50-64, and just 2% of those 65 and older.
But the numbers for all groups are growing, and it’s worth noting that 17% of Americans over 30 are keeping an eye on events in London via social networks and online outlets. The survey can be read in its entirety here (PDF).
One if the issues that might be slowing seniors from accessing (Olympic) information online is the speed of online access. The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) has been working to accelerate broadband access for seniors. The program is called the Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP), and the NTIA has been giving funds to regional and urban programs to extend access to computer hardware and online tech:
Our most recent published survey, in October of 2010, found that only 45 percent of U.S. households headed by someone 65 or older had broadband. That compares with 72 percent of households headed by someone ages 45 to 64, and 77 percent of households headed by someone ages 16 to 44. BTOP is helping close this gap. Roughly 20 digital inclusion projects that receive funding through the Recovery Act program provide services targeted at seniors in some capacity.
The economic and social opportunities that broadband and updated hardware can bring to American seniors will mean still further opportunity for older citizens to stay involved in all kinds of activities. In 2016 we’ll be able to see how many more seniors keep track of the goings on in Rio de Janeiro.