Majority of Brits approve of BBC Olympic coverage with 12% watching more than four hours daily

As the enthusiasm surrounding the Olympics Games continues to buzz in the capital, the BBC has received international recognition for its marathon coverage of the  Games, outdoing broadcasters all over the globe. With the large array of viewing options, our poll shows that a quarter of Brits tune in to the Olympic coverage for around one or two hours daily; over one in ten have been watching as much as four hours, while one in six have not been watching any coverage at all.

  • A quarter of Brits (25%) say they have been watching less than an hour of Olympic coverage each day
  • 26% say they watch one or two hours daily
  • 17% say they are currently watching three or four hours of Olympic coverage daily
  • Just over one in ten (12%) say they watch more than four hours
  • 17% say they have been watching none of the Olympic coverage at all

Expected to show around 2,500 hours of programming on the whole, the BBC’s coverage has included being able to choose twenty four live feeds of various events,  mobile phone apps with live newsfeeds, plus BBC iPlayer provides live coverage online.Of those who are watching the BBC coverage of the Games, the large majority believe the BBC is doing a good job, along with four fifths who think the BBC commentators have been well informed.

  • 87% think the BBC is doing a good job covering the Olympic Games (45% say they are doing a ‘fairly good job’, while 42% say a ‘very good job’)
  • Meanwhile just 6% think the BBC is doing a bad job of covering the Olympic Games (4% ‘fairly bad job’, 2% ‘very bad job’)
  • 82% think the BBC’s Olympic commentators have been well informed (53% fairly well informed, 29% very well informed)
  • 7% think the BBC’s Olympic commentators have been badly informed (6% fairly badly informed, 1% very badly informed)

The Olympic commentators, made up of journalists and ex-Olympians, have also garnered significant attention for their performance throughout the BBC’s coverage, with many praising their work saying it has so far been “an absolute triumph.”

Meanwhile, the Daily Mail has reported some negative feedback, after the BBC was been hit by claims that they have been insensitive when interviewing any losing competitors from the British team, with many accusing interviewers of being “too brutal” or “negative” with clearly disappointed contestants.

Trouble with first ‘social media’ Games

There were also reports of trouble for the broadcaster during the men’s cycling road race after a high volume of tweets sent by fans watching on disrupted the electronic updates on racers' times and positions. The congestion left viewers unsure of results, and commentators having to resort to their own watches to estimate times. IOC communications director Mark Adams has urged those attending the Games to cut back on the over-sharing. 

Regardless of some glitches, however, the coverage has proven popular among the British public, attracting a record breaking number of viewers, often reaching millions throughout the day, including the 20 million who tuned in to see Jamaican track star Usain Bolt break the world record in the men's 100m sprint.

See the full results and details of our poll here (pg 8-9)

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