Day 4 – Madhura Honey’s Crashing for the Gold

30 Jul

It takes years of hard work, pain, and sacrifice to represent your team at the Olympics. Or you just seize the moment and grab a walk-on role.

World, meet Madhura Honey.

Also in this post:
This tweet’s for you
Insight from the stands
Well alright then

You’d be forgiven for not knowing who she is. But if you were watching the opening ceremonies you might have caught a glimpse of her, maybe even a few seconds. Here is the newscast dissecting the incident.

Now starring in a walk-on role.

As the Indian national team walked on in their beautiful black and gold costumes, Honey led the pack in decidedly less impressive blue pants and blazing red shirt.

Yeah, that wasn’t part of the plan. The young lady from Bangalore was a volunteer selected to dance in the opening ceremonies. Just how she managed to walk on with the team is the big question.

“This was bizarre. We will ask for an apology,” the head of the Indian team said. “The Indian contingent was shown for just 10 seconds and to think this lady hogged all the limelight.”

The Internet world is not waiting for answers, or apologies. In typical form, Twitter exploded with all kinds of posts, 20 per minute, more than 48 hours after the incident.

And of course she was edited into hundreds of photos, from the royal wedding and presidential inaugurations to all sorts of sporting events. Indeed, Yahoo India offered users a cut-out of Honey to make the work easier.

This Tweet’s For You

Late Sunday, athletes started an online protest against IOC rules that prohibit them from appearing in ads for any company except official sponsors. That includes brands that invest millions in athletes like Nike and Red Bull.

Using the hashtags WeDemandChange2012 and Rule40 (the IOC rule at issue), the athletes let loose on Twitter. Sanya Richards-Ross kicked off the protest by using a profile photo of a Nike ad.

Several people jumping in on the protest noted the irony of a rule that protects advertisers like Coke and McDonalds at the expense of smaller athletics companies. But for athletes it seems to be about how they earn a living from the training they’ve invested.

“I am PROUD to represent my Country… but at the end of the day… THIS IS MY JOB!!!!!! #WeDemandChange of #Rule40 @NBCOlympics,” posted track and field Olympian Manteo Mitchell.

It’s easy to write this off as athletes wanting their money. But in this integrated media age, it’s worth considering just how much protection a sponsorship should provide.

Insight From the Stands

One of the greatest additions to the Olympics this time around is the number of people who are sitting in the stands and sharing the moment via Twitter, Instagram, and other social media.

Lisa Targett reminded us that no marketing agency can hold a candle to the efforts of an Olympic parent rallying support for his or her child.

“Cool dad next to me handing these out. Love it! @ London 2012 – Aquatics Centre,” she tweeted from the aquatic center.

The effort paid off, according to Thoman’s Facebook page (he’s taken a hiatus from Twitter); the swimmer did well in his races this weekend and is within striking distance of a medal.

Well Alright Then

As long as we’re talking about Twitter, Dr. Ruth Westheimer is alive and well, offering advice in 140 character doses. And she wants to know those feelings you have watching the games are okay.

About Project TILWO Every day I watch London 2012 Olympic coverage on TV and online then share the lessons I learned, with occasional help from my friends. Edited by Lynn Hess @ Premier Proofing.