Technology and Athletics

July 5, 2010  |  Events

I had an amazing experience this weekend.  Once in a lifetime.  My friend, Thie Convery, of Dundas, Ontario, Canada swam Lake Erie… That’s almost 20 kilometers shore to shore.  She did it to qualify for her bid to swim Lake Ontario next month.  I was on board one of the boats, and saw it all first-hand.  I saw something else first hand as well. .. the way in which Social Media is now playing a role in events such as these. (More…)

Years ago, when icons like Marilyn Bell swam Lake Ontario, there was no such thing as smart phones or Facebook or Twitter.  The media got the story when the swimmer reached shore.  Fast forward about 60 years and … well… you get the idea.

Folks on board the boat were texting anxious friends at home with regular updates… “She’s half way there!”  “Only another mile to go!”  They were snapping pictures with their phones and immediately emailing them back home.  Accounts of the victory on shore were everywhere within minutes of it happening.  Had Thie’s team chosen to incorporate Twitter and Facebook into the mix, they easily could have done so.

What an amazing world we live in today.  Technology has changed the face of the way we experience monumental events like these.  And believe me, it has changed for the better.  Spreading the word has never been so fast, so much fun.

Amazing feat.  Amazing day.  Amazing technology.

Congratulations, Thie!!!

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4 Comments


  1. Karen,

    You are soooo right. Social media has helped me spread my message about the Swim to End Polio – past swimmers never had access to this technology!

    http://www.SwimToEndPolio.ca

    Thie

  2. Hey, Sean — Great analogy!!! I love the bit about “barely having a story to tell when you got home”… Truer words never spoken. Isn’t it amazing that we can now relay events in the closest thing we’ve ever had to real time – without even spraining a Blackberry texting finger??? I think it’s a great thing… Technology is giving “the people” “the power” to report on their world. If mainstream media is smart and savvy, it will form partnerships and synergies with other kinds of communication platforms, and do it fast. This is the future, and yes, the times, they are a changing. What would Bob Dylan say? Hmmmm…. ;-)

  3. Glad you had such a great day. I agree that all this tech is changing the nature of relaying an event so that everyone knows about it in real time or damn close to it. My flight in a DC-3 Dakota in formation with a C47 cargo plane that had dropped Airborne Troopers on D-Day was up on Facebook within five minutes of it happening. It would have been sooner but I my hands hadn’t finished shaking yet. I barely had a story to tell by the time I got home because they’d all seen the video already. Is that good or bad? Guess you’ll have to decide for yourself. I didn’t have to post it that fast but I really wanted to share the experience with everyone while it was fresh. Just ten years ago you would have had to be a TV or Radio personality to get your story out that fast. The times, they are a changing. I say “Bring It On!”

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