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Go for gold

The web is flooded with Facebook pages of fans cheering the Indian contingent at the Olympics

social media Updated: Jul 23, 2012 15:01 IST
Sneha Mahale

The opening ceremony of the 2012 London Olympic Games is barely a week away, and for the first time, sports enthusiasts in India are hopeful of a good haul. So, Facebook pages are spouting in the virtual world, all egging the likes of Sushil Kumar, Abhinav Bindra, MC Mary Kom and other hopefuls to go for gold.

Leading the list is the page titled ‘Team India for Olympics 2012’. With over 65,000 likes and 25,000 people talking about Indian sportspersons, it ranks among
the more popular communities online. Powered by the website, sportskeeda.com, one of the largest sports writer networks in the world, the page offers continuous updates about activities leading up to the Games, with info on players, details of rare events and who to watch out for. There are also contests like the ‘Cheer For
India’ poster to keep the average Indian fan engaged. “The idea is to let our athletes know that 1.2 billion people will cheer for every Indian star in London,” says Vijay Singh, a member of the community.

Similarly, pages like ‘Olympics India’ and ‘Indian Olympic Team’ are recent debutants on the Facebook space. In their nascent stages, they give information about apps that offer updates about results at every sporting event scheduled. Junaid Khan, a hockey fan, says, “I want our team to prove that they rank among the best.”

On the other hand, pages like ‘India in Olympics’ are giving out graphics on venues, snapshots of previous winners and updates on athletes on whom rests our hopes. Their message, ‘India has to win at least 1 gold medal for every 20 crore Indians.’ The official page of the Indian Olympic Association was launched on June 11, but it doesn’t seem to have too many fans yet. However, some behind-thescene pictures of stars has got the page a few ‘likes’.

So sign up, and let the Games begin.

Social networking
Facebook is teaming up with broadcasters across the globe for coverage of the 2012 London Olympics.

The International Olympic Committee has used several unique elements to spur interest among younger viewers. So much so that the official mascots for the games, Wenlock and Mandeville, have their own accounts on Facebook and Twitter.