Voices
in
Japan

have your say

What do you think of Japan's TV coverage of the Vancouver Winter Olympics so far?

65 Comments

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

65 Comments
Login to comment

I'll start it off with the standard comment about international sporting events in Japan...

Is the Olympics the one when all countries from around the world get together for the love of watching the best athletes compete in fellowship with athletes from EVERY part of the world??? Well I haven't seen that Olympics yet.

As far as I can tell only Japan is in the Olympics. Ask one person in Japan who won the gold in the men’s 500-meter speedskating final and they won't know...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Ask one person in Japan who won the gold in the men’s 500-meter speedskating final and they won't know...

Japanese Person: The Korean guy Korean person: Mo Tae-bum!

(Fill in your country) person: No clue.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It is fantastic, makes me feel Japan is on Holiday. News channels - Business News - Even Weather News all begin with Vancouver. Two medals in four days and Gold yet to grab !

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Hmmm... Nigelboy... Just asked 4 Japanese colleagues and not one knew... Sorry!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

athletes from EVERY part of the world??? Well I haven't seen that Olympics yet.

depends if you get NHK BS 1 or not. Regular TV is heavy on the Japanese focus (but this IS Japan), but on BS everything in the morning is live so you can see all the athletes. I've been here 20 years, and Olympic coverage is so much better than in the States where most of the stuff is recorded, even these Olympics are being delayed for broadcast on the west coast! And you only see the US players and any other nationals are only shown if they had won a medal.

Sooooo many commercial breaks too in the US, thank god for NHK BS

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@ Movieguy

The coverage is the same in all countries. In the US the majority of the coverage is about US athletes, in Canada it is the same. It is called country pride. Want to see how other countries are doing? Go on the internet or look for a foreign channel.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I haven't heard Becky or the SMAP guy commenting yet. How are they doing? Has anyone heard them?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Momotarou... It's not that I expect detailed coverage of athletes from other countries, but being American I KNOW they do interviews with the athletes who won medals even if they weren't American.

Sunday in the moguls when they Japanese woman placed fourth they immediately went to her and that's what I expect, but I heard nothing from the medal winners after that.

I want to see the Japanese team do well, but the media coverage is horrendous.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Has anyone heard them?

I heard the smap guy about 15 minutes ago comment that he reckons the Olympics are probably a little different than other competitions in that the pressure on atheletes is probably increased. By listening to him you'd think he was addressing an audience who had no idea what the Olympics were. But judging by the overall coverage and the decision to hire guys like smap frontmen as commentators, the audience probabably does have no idea.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The coverage is the same in all countries. In the US the majority of the coverage is about US athletes, in Canada it is the same.

This simply isn't true. At least on the US networks they'll do 20 minute biographical spots on various individual atheletes from around the world. In Japan's defense I will say I was shocked this morning to see a 20 second spot dedicated to Shani Davis.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

disrespectful, selfish....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

spot on combini. In Canada the Olympics are always a big event and there is always the option of watching it live or on tape delay no matter what country the games are in. Perhaps that's because Canada is a multicultural country.

I personally have not watched any of the coverage on tv here in Japan. Based on what others have told me about the coverage of any international event in this country I haven't missed much.

Having said that does anyone know a good internet website that's showing the games?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

justin.tv

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The coverage is the same in all countries. In the US the majority of the coverage is about US athletes, in Canada it is the same. It is called country pride. Want to see how other countries are doing? Go on the internet or look for a foreign channel.

I strongly disagree. If my home country (and many other countries) would do things the way you say they do, they would have only a few minutes coverage for the entire Olympics.

I heard the name of the 2 Japanese skaters more than 20 times this morning alone. I heard the name of the guy who won gold only once, and that was not even in a sentence mentioning he was the guy who won it...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Somewhat nauseating. I can't get all worked up in national hysteria for a foreign country. A more balanced approach would be appreciated.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

You just better hope there is a Japanese person in any events you want to watch.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I didn't know it was on TV. All I've seen is the luge death over and over unfortunately.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The coverage early in the morning/during the day is OK, because it is live, so the J-networks are forced to show everyone. The taped coverage at night is pathetic -- pure Japanese rah-rah. The born-in-Japan Russian pairs skater, who finished fourth, got ten times as much air-time last night as did the medal-winning couples. And the gold and silver medal winners were simply incredible. That's a crime.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

ok had my coffee... here goes; Biased, nationalistic, childish... they literally only show the top 3 and then Japanese only no matter what place. Its like the other athletes dont exist. News (30min) last night had 18 mins of the two medalists (hometown blah) and then news, then topped it off with a recap of the first 18 in the last 2 mins... Now that is damn shame.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I've been following the 2010 Japan Olympics on TBS and it's OK-- a little fluffy and topical though. Are other countries competing too? I didn't know that.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

lol classic.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Japanese Olympic tv coverage is almost a centric as the US but not quite. End of story

0 ( +0 / -0 )

You can watch the Canada v Norway hockey game live online here for free right now.I guess it is from the NHK BS feed

http://www9.nhk.or.jp/olympic-streaming/index.html

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I'd like to comment about the coverage in my "home" country. Only I can't because it starts at a late hour that I am not prepared to stay for and could not be bothered setting up my recorder.

Yep, I thought Japan was biased about the Olympics. They are probably are to a fair degree. BUT so is my country, and just as bad if not worse.

Let the Japanese do what they want in their own country. White people (and I am one too), you don't own or rule the world.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Having said that does anyone know a good internet website that's showing the games?

The vancouver2010.com front page has links to where you can watch online depending on your country. For general coverage, stats etc, the BBC website is brilliant.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Mtodd

thx for the web link, 8-0 Cda, I take back a bit about J-tv coverage! Too bad reg tv cant step up with more coverage tho

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Being that Japanese TV does not have a limitless selection of channels like in n.america its no wonder why only Japan-centric olympic events covered

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Most definitely better than nought. I like the glittery sets and smiling sportscasters. I must say there is a need for better representation of Japan from the coverage abroad though.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Better yet was watching the highlight - bronze, silver... oh wait!? Who go the gold? They cut the Korean guy OUT of the freaken medal ceremony! Skipped right over him and then onto film of the two Japanese guys posing for pictures with their medals.

I won't even START about the RUSSIAN with a kanji name or how she is called "Russia koseki, nihon sushin".... Grrrrr....

Japan's coverage sucks. The only sports I've seen are the sports they think the Japanese will do well in. Booooo!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

japanese tv is a product for the japanese...why would they program events for the foreigners living here ??and who cares about what we see and dont see in an all foreign (for us) medal ceremony...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

You just better hope there is a Japanese person in any events you want to watch.

Yeah, I have yet to see any hockey!

But in all fairness, I think most (all?) countries focus on their own country's athletes, not only Japan.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I was tired of the coverage of the born in Japan Russian pair... I expected them to take a medal but the born in Japan Russian skater made too many mistakes, maybe Russian people are not glad with her performance.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Absolutely horrific! I can't imagine anything worse than that. No other countries competing. That reading letters supporting Japanese athletes is just disgusting. Oh, and despite time difference not being that bad, most of the stuff shown is re-run. Canada - Norway was 2 hour delay and they didnt show Russia - Latvia at all!!! Online streaming didn't have that either.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It is terrible but that is no surprise. In pro golf the Japanese media is not getting as many press passes as the used to because they stop covering the tournament as soon as the Japanese fail to do well. It is not all countries. Japan is getting a reputation around the world for their inept coverage. Canadian TV does not stop covering the British Open just because Mike Weir did not make the cut. Stop defending Japanese media. It is racist.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Get ready for 900 interviews with Mao-chans family crying when she doesnt get a medal.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

That is not really true in many cases. One of my favorite segments of the games are the inspirational stories behind the athletes. In the west it isn't uncommon to see this. Both the Russian Pairs Skaters, Chinese Pairs as well as various other athletes get Prime Time coverage specials on them in many cases. Even if the US won no metals you would still see this regardless. CBS networks which represent some 6 in total broadcast Olympic Programing almost around the clock. It isn't just of the US athletes either. They show the entire segment whenever possible or cut between different venues or in Prime Time Coverage. If no US athlete are in it or get bumped out early on they still show it lol! Japan in contrast is another story as still can't seem to get beyond the stereotypes and extreme xenophobia even in Olympic competition which is sad.

This is not what the true meaning of the Olympic Games is support to represent. It should be more about breaking down borders and doing your best regardless of what county you represent. Why even have the Olympic Games then if no one is willing to at least meet the other half way. There is nothing wrong with nationalistic pride but not to the point of being arrogant. I am often asked where I come from and I respond. Would you you think of me differently if i told you? I usually get a somewhat puzzled look which is always amusing. I want to be seen not by my culture, nationality, or ethnicity but by my actions. The Olympic Games is not just about representing your country but bringing people together in the pursuit of a common goal. I have tremendous respect for Japan but it's about time they stop living in a bubble and embrace the world. Arrogance is bliss so they say and you cant expect to understand people if you don't make the effort at least to try. A world without boarders is a world I live to see one day.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

A world without boarders is a world I live to see one day.

Excellent typo! Some Hokkaido residents would agree, lol.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Don't think Japan's coverage is centric compare to other countries. Japan Team is competing in all events. Only around five have a chance to medal and it's quite obvious the five would get a lot more coverage.(Unless an underdog Japanese wins a medal and he/she will get lots of coverage) US team has a lot more than Japan team that are capable of medaling. Obviously the coverage approach would be different. It's all about getting tv ratings. If the TV companies think showing more news about atheletes around the world more would get better ratings, they would have. Now I don't think it's fair to complain about what the Japanese want to watch in the Olypmics. If they want to watch more of there own althetes are doing, that's fine with me. If they want to watch Ian Thorpe type atheletes more than Japanese atheletes, that's fine with me.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

no russian-latvia game ??? well thats unbelievable,would have had me pinned to my chair...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Japan is too self centered. It is just too much......so I don't watch. I wonder if it is the same in other Asian countries???

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It,s pretty one sided but the japanese do what the japanese do......

0 ( +0 / -0 )

<<<<Japan is too self centered. It is just too much......so I don't watch. I wonder if it is the same in other Asian countries???>>>

NO!!

is only japanese because that is the only way they can feel good about then self!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"the grass is always greener"

check out the comments from folks in San Francisco. They hate the US coverage. I hated it too. More "features" on athletes, and commercials than actual sports

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/02/17/DDN51C213C.DTL

0 ( +0 / -0 )

US coverage-3 commercial breaks from the time skaters warm up to the time they get their score. And we are complaining here about NHK?

I watched Canada hockey, all the men's figure skating, women's snowboard cross, curling, luge, biathlon etc etc today from all nationalities. What do you complainers want?

Yeah, there is focus on the Japanese, but we still get to see everyone else too. Get NHK BS 1 and enjoy the sports

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Don't have NHK BS 1. Don't watch NHK anyway.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Well you do have sponsors and the breaks are all part of the game. Although it is still far better coverage then you get in Japan. You watch a Baseball game and you often never know who won. When Ichiro Suzuki is playing of coarse you see that but as soon as he's not they don't even bother to finish the game usually. If a network back home did that they would get sued. The NBC website also has every athlete profiled from every country under the country section. I read the Japanese Olympic profiles, all 94 of them which was interesting. They even have statical info, Medals Record, Vancouver Outlook, News, Photos, Video etc. This is from every country represented. Newspapers often profile foreign athletes as well. Miki Ando’s just recently had a cover story on her in the New York Times.

In contract what Japanese network or newspaper would even bother doing this if they weren't Japanese. In regards to the article I did read it and while that is true to a point. Due to legal changes in broadcasting regulations almost nothing is live anymore. It is also at the discretion of local CBS affiliates as to how much or little they broadcast on specific sporting events. Since Prime Time coverage is the most popular not to mention time zone and viewership differences. Networks need to stagger the broadcasts to get as much viewership as possible during that time. Anyways NHK or whoever have the right to broadcast what they want but to say Japanese TV Coverage of the Vancouver Games is non bios in their programing is a bit of a stretch.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Its pathetic. I thought Channel 7 Australia's coverage of Torino 2006 was as bad as it gets. Coverage of Vancouver 2010 here is even worse. If I see that skater kid being interviewed one more time I think I'll scream.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Im with Mansen!! I only care for coverage for the country im supporting and Im positive most people feel the seem way. The ones pissed off are the 1% gaijin population. Canada, UK, usa, etc are multicultural co0untries so it only seems obvious to cover more..

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Commericals- commericals that show soccer & baseball tooooo much. What does that have to do with winter olympics ? Why don't they show winter olympics realted sports commercials. Toooo much soccer commercials. Give the japanese snow board team a commerical.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Im with Mansen!! I only care for coverage for the country im supporting and Im positive most people feel the seem way

Way to go, tool

0 ( +0 / -0 )

they win a medal and all of a sudden every single person who knows the medal winner in whatever miniscule way gets on TV. kindergarten, elementary, junior high, high school teachers and classmates, students going to the schools now, his personal hometwon cheering squad (all 80 years or older), where he eats ramen, goes shopping, all broadcast and all fair game. kinda scary.

as for coverage of the games, well, mediocre at best. their analysts are unknowledgeable, and the announcers seem like they got hired a week before the games.

they way they relay key aspects of different sports seem like the sports are being played for the first time in history.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

mansen and lovejapan have a very good point. anybody who fails to understand that gaijin are only 1.5% of the population will pull out the same old arguments that NHK is doing a poor job of serving the general population.

who is really the one that is self-centered, NHK or the very small minority wanting to change a nation's television programming to suit their tastes?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Here at Tottenham, we're wondering why we haven't seen any British medal winners on NHK.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Not watching, Japanese commentators have no skill and are just a "gaibate voice"

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I think you are being a bit unfair as I don't think most people here are wanting to change a nation's television programming to suit their tastes. I really resent that as i have more respect for this country then most gaijin do. The Olympic Games are not about winning metals or representing any particular country as far as I am concerned. The fundamental values of Olympism have the same meaning for every human being hoping to fulfill their ambitions and to build a better world. Those values are the search for excellence, fair play, respect for others and harmony between body and mind. It seeks to create a way of life based on the joy found in effort, the educational values of good and respect for universal fundamental and ethical principles.

It is to draw the world’s attention to what humanity can achieve in the name of international understanding. This is what the Olympic Games represent. How do you expect to achieve this when the only side you ever see is your own. This is just my opinion but I enjoy seeing other countries compete regardless or culture or ethnicity. I also know of many Japanese that are dissatisfied with the TV coverage Japan has provided but would never admit that in public. In this instance the gaijin stereotype doesn't hold much water. You have similar minority population percentages in the west as well. Yet isn't it strange that those groups still seem to get represented despite their small demographics. I am not saying Japan needs to reinvent the wheel but the Olympic Games only comes around once every four years. It's not to much to ask and maybe just maybe we all can learn something along the way.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Rubbish!

I'd like to think that sports programmes cater to sports fans, but then again, we're in Japan. If Japan were good at tiddlywinks, we'd be seeing that all day on TV.

Just tried to look at some videos on the NHK Olympic website. F.A. there! ALL videos concentrating on Japanese participants, as if noone else existed. Of course there was a long video about the Russian skaters in the pairs section - and we all know why. It's as if Kavaguti never left the motherland.

I had the TV on while Japan were playing their first match in curling. All I could hear from the commentators were Nippon number one, America number two, over and over again. If it was going to be like this, I'd suggest NHK to get Becky to do the commentary to save money. As a sports fan, I'd appreciate useful and insightful commentary. Switched the TV off after 2 minutes.

However, NHK has shown ice hockey for those who are interested (not me). But you'll need lots of strong black coffee, as they don't start showing the highlights until after midnight.

My Japanese friend was also sick of the constant freestyle skiing highlights last Sunday. We'd already seen it before lunch, saw it again at the restaurant (not out of choice), then twice in the evening. The worst thing was that they were showing it simultaneously on two terrestrial channels. What a waste.

I'm not asking NHK to serve foreigners. Just sports fans. It's as if Japanese sports fans don't exist. Can you imagine the BBC only showing Wimbledon matches with British players or NBC showing only Americans' faces in golf tournaments as if noone else existed?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I really can't understand you guys watching NHK + Becky + "nihon numbawan!" when you have the choice of internet + English experts + intelligent comments.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

To all who disagree with me, fine just more bashing of a country that you decided to go to. Most US coverage is about Americans. When I am in Japan I want to see what is going on with Japan, and the country and same with the Olympics. When I come over in a couple days and watch TV I hope it is about Japanese athletes and not others. Nothing wrong with being national centric, that is the Japanese way and nothing wrong with it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Here at Tottenham, we're wondering why we haven't seen any British medal winners on NHK.

COYS !

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Here at Tottenham, we're wondering why we haven't seen any British medal winners on NHK.

Now THAT is something I do not blame NHK for.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Most US coverage is about Americans.

Fine, but I don't live in US. I'll complain if and when I am solely dependent on US media. Please send me links to videos of events involving non-Japanese athletes. The NHK homepage won't show them, NBC doesn't show them to those outside USA, and Youtube deletes them.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If you can't get NBC website from Japan I recommend using a VPN tunnel. That will bypass any filters which might be in place. It seems strange why Japan would block this or even the US for that matter. HMA Pro VPN is the best one I have used but it is a subscription service. They do have a free online version if you can access it. If not you will need the subscription service one which is about 4,588.48 yen for six months or 7,218.60 yen for 12 months which isn't a bad deal really. If nothing else it's worth checking out. Under NBC's website click nations which will list all the participating athletes for every country and has quite a bit of info on them including Bio, Metal History, Vancouver Outlook, Photos and live video feeds. It isn't perfect but a lot more then you can get from within Japan no doubt. I just read all 94 of the Japanese Olympic profiles which was interesting. Well hope that helps.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Actually, I've not been watching....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I am surprised to see this topic From JT. I had said something along the lines of what most of you are saying, and the moderator expeditiously removed my comment.

Wow, well I now realize most of these comments second my feelings about Japan's coverage. I must have used the wrong tone.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I have to resurrect this topic as I can't find anything else that was recently published. In regards to the 2013 IAAF World Championship, how is it that a certain television station collects a fee every month if you own a tv and the only thing international that they give lengthy coverage to is war? How can Japan bid for hosting the 2020 olympics when the majority of the people show no interest? It's the 6th day into the championship and that certain tv station has never given a summary of events (only station where the news is in English as well as Japanese)! Japan is not interested in anything outside of sports that they dominate. I respect that. I'll go on the internet and seek the information I want. But why then does Japan bid to host a similar event? Japan should not host the 2020 olympics. This needs to be brought to the attention of the IOC.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites