Even though we don’t leave until Sunday, our newspaper staff decided to give us a nice sendoff. Speeches were made and tears where shed (“I have how much more work with those two gone?”). We were given ice cream and popsicles and just a little pressure to produce some good digital first content.
Speaking of “digital first,” I’m a little scared. Yesterday I went to my cellphone company to switch my service to an international plan. Months ago I was told this would be my best option by the cellphone company. Turns out, there is no international plan for the UK. Zoiks!
So I will do my best to find coffee shops (tea houses?) that have free wifi so I can send my photos to the blog and to the Santa Cruz Sentinel. And my phone calls will be handled by Skype, but if there’s no wifi around, I’m screwed. Makes me nostalgic for the good ol’ days of analog information. I think it was way back in 2008.
Truth is, with the digital revolution, we need to adapt or get out of the way. The newspaper isn’t the first draft of history anymore. I’m afraid history won’t have a first draft. But what does that have to do with the Olympics? Plenty.
This will be the first social media Olympics. Sure, Vancouver had a social aspect, but this will be different. There are more smartphones, more twitter accounts, more Facebook pages and the new player in town, Google+ (my personal favorite). All this really means to you, the Olympic fan, is that it will be harder to remain spoiler free until the Prime Time broadcasts on NBC.
Does that matter? Nope. Spoilers don’t ruin the viewing pleasure, so says a study. Knowing whether Gabby Douglas gets the gold won’t prevent you from watching it, or reading about it on this blog (right?). Besides, you can’t really know all the details in 140 characters.
I’ve rambled a bit, as I’m prone to do sometimes (lucky you). I’m excited to be representing my newspaper in London but terrified at being on the front lines of the digital age. I feel like my future is at stake and this is my turning point. I may even be living the first line of my obituary right now. (Anthony L. Solis, who was an award-winning Olympics photographer, died Sunday evening at the age of 124) I just hope it’s more than 140 characters long.