A big thumbs up to Google- Winter Olympics 2014

It can’t have escaped the attention of many people that the XXII Winter Olympics have begun in Sotchi, Russia, and that there has been a large amount of tension due to the ridiculous, barbaric and utterly repulsive anti-homosexuality laws that their ruling dictatorship has put in place. So yesterday I was impressed and warmed by the actions of Google, who in their usual fashion produced a ‘Google Doodle’ to celebrate the opening of the games, but which looked like this:

2014-winter-olympics-

Image: google.co.uk

In an incredibly bold move, they used the colours of the LGBT flag as the background to the Doodle, blatently showing their support for all athletes, irrespective of their sexuality. Similarly, the broadcaster of the Winter Games in the UK, Channel 4, have had a rebrand for all of their coverage:

Channel 4 LGBT

Image: theguardian.com

Indeed, Channel 4 have gone even further, placing an advert at the beginning of all of their coverage with a cabaret singer performing a song that celebrates diversity and wishes the athletes of any orientation good luck in the games. It is insanely camp, but a rather disturbing and yet joyful two-fingers to those who have a problem with other people on shallow and prejudiced grounds.

However, the biggest thumbs up has to go to the German athletes, who entered the Winter Olympic stadium like this:

Image: huffingtonpost.com

Image: huffingtonpost.com

They are not following the LGBT flag exactly, but you can see where they are going with this, and it seems that the rest of the world was clear on the message that the team were giving.

In 2014, there is little room for such intolerance, prejudice, small-mindedness and simple hatred of our fellow human beings. Hopefully through such bold acts as these, certain individuals and groups may open their eyes to the reality of our present world, where people and nations are valued for who they are and who they can be, rather than judged on baseless propaganda and hatred for not conforming and being different. We all know where it got us in WWII, when prejudice and irrationality took hold over common sense, compassion, decency and morality.

To end, a quote from the Olympic Charter, which accompanied the Google Doodle on Google’s homepage yesterday:

 “The practice of sport is a human right. Every individual must have the possibility of practicing sport, without discrimination of any kind and in the Olympic spirit, which requires mutual understanding with a spirit of friendship, solidarity and fair play.”

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One thought on “A big thumbs up to Google- Winter Olympics 2014

  1. Great post, had not seen the Channel 4 song! Something that may interest you as well. I am currently on a bit of Russian reading bend at the moment. Half way through Catherine Merridale’s Red Fortress history book on the Kremlin (and Russian at large) that does a great job of capturing the portrait of a country today, how and why it is the way it is. particularly interesting is the Orthodoxy of the Christian church and it’s views that heavily influence daily Russian life today. Further I also recently purchased Anne Applebaum’s Iron Curtain book, which details the whole of Eastern Europe’s fall under the USSR and the effect on each country. Have not started it yet, since it’ll be a great follow up to The Red Fortress! (Also, if you are interested I really recommend Applebaum’s Gulag history book – it is extremely moving of the mass suffering of so many millions of people). Also I picked up a copy of ‘Russian Magic Tales: From Puskin to Platonov’ (edited by Robert Chandle). I cannot recommend this book enough! It is fantastic to dip into and to learn about the fantastic folk tales and the importance of the tales in daily life. I aim to write a quick review for the bone blog! (importance of oral tales etc).

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