Viewing entries tagged
london 2012

London 2012 Cultural Olympiad Social Media Evaluation (2013)

London 2012 Cultural Olympiad Social Media Evaluation (2013)

Miah, A. (2013) London 2012 Cultural Olympiad Social Media Data Analysis, Institute of Cultural Capital.  

The top findings are:

  • The #London2012festival Twitter hashtag was a gateway for over 500 cultural
  • organizationsto promote themselves during 2012.
  • The key drivers of London 2012 Festival social media activity were LOCOG Twitter
  • accounts (organization and individual).
  • Some of the smallest arts organizations(in terms of social media presence) in the UK
  • produced some of the largest amount of social media traffic eg. Lakes Alive.
  • Ruth Mackenzie was the second-most mentioned individual on #London2012Festival,
  • after Yoko Ono, demonstrating the value of personalized leadership in social media
  • relations.
  • Across the social media assets, @London2012Fest reached the same degree of influence
  • as Arts Council England (each had 66 Klout1
  • score) and exceeded them in terms of
  • absolute followers (over 42,000, which was more than Jonnie Peacock’s Twitter account
  • by the end of the Paralympic Games.
  • The @London2012Fest twitter account was the largest Cultural Olympiad brand on
  • social media.
  • The primary London 2012 Twitter assets (eg. @London2012 or @SebCoe) worked well for
  • London 2012 Festival in advance of the Games, but were not optimally sharing content
  • for Festival during the Games.
  • Collectively, projects associated with London 2012 Festival created new communities of
  • arts audiences, though Festival was not always visually ortextually associated with the
  • project.
  • Outdoor, mass spectacle events were the most successful in terms of social media traffic.
  • With the exception of the Guardian, traditional media did not do very much to promote
  • London 2012 Festival through social media.
  • The @London2012Fest twitter account was the second most followed LOCOG identity,
  • after @London2012, exceeding the follower count of both mascots.

Watching the Hashtags

Watching the Hashtags


This month, I have an article published in The Walkley magazine, an insiders magazine for Australia and New Zealand media. The edition arrived in the post today and it's a really nice publication with a whole section on the Olympics. I learned a lot from reading it. Rod Savage and Toni Hetherington from News Limited write about delivering their Games across 'five screens', when talk of a 'second screen' focused people's attention for years earlier on the approach to Beijing. I'll let you try to guess which are the five screens. Karen Barlow from ABC also proclaims that social media brought us together, noting Twitter's role as a story source. My article considers the lasting changes to the Games, resulting from how it was delivered via social media during London 2012, focusing largely on how social media stories became part of the news cycle within main stream press.


A Very Olympic Last night of the Proms

A Very Olympic Last night of the Proms


The last night of sport at the London 2012 Olympic & Paralympic Games coincided with the BBC’s Last Night of the Proms on 8th September and it was a night full of Olympic tributes. The programme included work by Josef Suk, which won a musical prize at the Los Angeles 1932 Olympic Games, back when there were also contests for artists, as well as athletes. His ‘Towards a New Life’ is now considered a classic Olympic fanfare and a fitting prelude to John Williams’ ‘Olympic Fanfare and Theme’, which took place in Part two of the evening

The popular Williams composition is an iconic Olympic musical score and was even greeted in the Royal Albert Hall with a solitary Olympic flag, which stood amidst a uniquely international collection of other flags in what is one of the most popular British nights of the year, watched all over the UK.

It was also a night for festival. In this unique year for the BBC Proms, now in its 118th season, it was made part of the London 2012 Festival, the primary Cultural Olympiad brand during Games time, running throughout the Proms season.

It was also apt then that Antonin Dvork’s Carnival was played in this important year, as it was first played at the original Proms in 1895. Dvorak – whose birthday in 1841 also fell on the 8th September – composed the piece imagining a ‘lonely, contemplative wanderer reaching at twilight a city where a festival is in full swing’. Played at twilight in London on the penultimate night of the London 2012 Games and within the London 2012 Festival programme, one could not imagine a greater festival in any fuller swing!

Whether by design or by chance, this Paralympic Games time finale was a wonderful climax to the London 2012 Games’ cultural programme, which could only be followed by a closing ceremony, which takes place on Sunday the 9th September at 730pm.

The evening concluded by bringing the Olympic programme full circle, with a rendition of Jerusalem, which also featured in the Olympic Games Opening Ceremony. There was also a surprise appearance of Team GB gold medalists, who accompanied the audience in a rendition of “Rule Britannia’, a Last Night of the Proms classic, and a special mention to London 2012’s Cultural Olympiad by Jiri Belohlavek, outgoing Chief Conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra – the evening’s star of the show.

London 2012: The First Social Media Olympics?

I've given a lot of interviews over the Olympic Games about social media, also writing a few pieces, including this one for the BBC. Here's a glimpse of some of the presentations I've given at recent conferences too. Here it is as a slideshare too, this is from the talk at Oxford University

Olympic Hockey

Olympic Hockey


Around the Olympic park today, I was given 2 free tickets to the Hockey. Who'd have imagined it?

BBC2 Newsnight

BBC2 Newsnight


I finally got around to watching myself on BBC Newsnight, which went live a few days ago. We talked about gene doping, human enhancement and the future of sport. Another fun experience on a great show.

London 2012 Festival press conference

The Rio de Janeiro Secretary of State for Culture joins Director of the London 2012 Festival Ruth Mackenzie for a press conference.

Olympic bloom

Forget the Aquatic centre, the Olympic Stadium, or even the Orbit tower, what struck me most about the Olympic Park architecture was the beauty of the wild flowers, which were unlike anything I've ever seen before. They also featured within the Opening Ceremony landscape making a lovely connection between the interior and exterior.

London 2012 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony [PHOTOS]

London 2012 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony [PHOTOS]


I took these photographs during the rehearsal on 25th July. If you'd like explanations, read LOCOG's media guide alongside. The English Meadow - life as we imagine it used to be


 The Olympic Bell - the largest harmonically tuned bell in the world, represents London, a city of bells

The RSPCA was consulted extensively on the use of animals within the ceremony and you might have noticed that they all left for bed just before it got noisy.


The Blue panels symbolized the ocean, surrounding the Isles of Wonder

The countdown balloons - did you spot the one that floated into the sky to record the journey?

Isambard Kingdom Brunel arrives and performs from Shakespeare's Caliban, symbolizing the start of the Industrial revolution that changed the world

The labour force arrives unearthing the natural world

The Suffragettes arrive to proclaim equal opportunities for women

The 5th Olympic ring is forged by the workers, perhaps symbolizing Britain's past contribution to reuniting the world in times of trouble, by hosting two Games when there were no other alternative hosts.

The formal protocol elements

Representatives from the National Health Service and the Great Ormond Street Hospital

Mary Poppins and characters from Harry Potter symbolize Britain's contribution to children's literature

The 1960s  arrive and herald a new modern era, quickly followed by the 70s, 80s, and 90s

Akram Khan concludes the formal elements with a beautiful choreography symbolizing humanity's mortality




All the Bells

Ruth Mackenzie, Director of London 2012 Festival and Jeremy Hunt MP, Secretary of State for Culture Media and Sport are joined by local children for All the Bells, by Martin Creed