Also, there were very few human interest pieces that detailed an athlete’s individual experience as a result of the scandal and the IOC’s decision. BBC offered an interesting take by featuring young Russians living in the UK and their feelings on the banning of Russian athletes. Most of those interviewed said Russia deserved a second chance, Russia isn’t the only country whose athletes have used performance-enhancing drugs, and all Russian athletes shouldn’t be banned. Within the article, BBC only offered one UK Russian resident that was against the coverage of the scandal and thought the banning of Russian athletes was an attempt by western countries to punish Russia (Morgan, 2016).
Deutsche Well, Germany’s international public broadcaster, relayed more human interest stories related to the scandal than BBC. For example, the “My Olympics” series was created to explore different perspectives of people around the world who in various ways were connected to Rio 2016. Those featured included a sports journalist from India, German diplomats, and Olympics volunteers with Down syndrome. One video featured the head of press at the Russian Fan-house in Brazil. She expressed that the banning of athletes was a shock and that Russian athletes are not only doping athletes (“My Olympics”, 2016). DW stories went beyond looking at the scandal from a broad Olympic standpoint by relaying stories about banned athletes in specific sports like wrestling and weightlifting (“Olympics: Ban on Russian weightlifters and rowers upheld”, 2016). Some stories included doping allegations in other countries such as Kenya.
• Doubt in the McLauren report
• Disappointment by Russian athletes
• Defensiveness by Russian athletes
• Message of other countries do it
("My Olympics" , 2016)
DW - Agenda-Setting & World System Theory
Story placement can also have a significant impact on readers and viewers in terms of agenda-setting. DW features a “Doping” category on its sports section that still contains the most updated information related to the Russian scandal and the IOC’s decision. Like the United Kingdom, German is a member of the European Union. As a result, DW, in its coverage of the Russian doping scandal, has the potential to have significant influence over a large audience as a core zone (McPhail, 2014).
The Russian doping Scandal wasn’t as widely covered on Euronews, the multilingual, French news service, as it was on other sites. A quick search of the site for stories related to “Russia” and “doping,” only resulted in 19 results, which isn’t a lot, considering coverage of the doping scandal began in 2015 and continues today. Like other European news outlets, the stories featured more human interest pieces and provided perspectives of those against the IOC’s decision to ban athletes.
Euronews - Agenda Setting & World System Theory
Since France is a primary member of the European Union, it is designated as a core zone in the world system. Almost every story featured a video that offered more details into how Russian citizens and Russian athletes felt about the ban. The 271 Russian athletes that were allowed to compete in the Rio Olympics rejected the stigma associated with the banning (“Amid boos and jeers, Russia athletes reject doping stigma,” 2016). Many endured taunting during individual competitions. In terms of agenda-setting, the Euronews articles, along with the Russian athletes, continued to push the agenda that the banning was unfair and the doping investigation was political (“Putin says claims of Russian doping ‘political’ | Euronews,” 2016).
Ahmed, J., & Hussain, S. (2016). Coverage of Pakistan General Election 2008 in Leading Pakistan English Newspapers: Exploring Agenda Setting. Global Media Journal: Pakistan Edition, 9(2), 1–16.
Amid boos and jeers, Russia athletes reject doping stigma. (2016, November 8). Retrieved April 25, 2017, from http://www.euronews.com/2016/08/11/amid-boos-and-jeers-russia-athletes-reject-doping-stigma
Hardy, C. (2016, August 15). Russia’s only athlete cleared to compete in Olympics. Retrieved April 25, 2017, from http://www.euronews.com/2016/08/15/russia-s-only-athlete-cleared-to-compete-in-olympics
Hunt, A., & Wheeler, B. (2017, March 30). Brexit: All you need to know about the UK leaving the EU. BBC News. Retrieved from http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-32810887
McPhail, T. L (2014). Global communication: Theories, stakeholders, and trends. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell
Morgan, F. (2016, July 29). How young Russians feel about their athletes being banned from the Rio Olympics. Retrieved April 23, 2017, from http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/article/36904265/how-young-russians-feel-about-their-athletes-being-banned-from-the-rio-olympics
My Olympics (2016). Retrieved from http://www.dw.com/en/my-olympics-a-russian-perspective/av-19469216
Olympics: Ban on Russian weightlifters and rowers upheld. (2016, March 8). Retrieved April 23, 2017, from http://www.dw.com/en/olympics-ban-on-russian-weightlifters-and-rowers-upheld/a-19447614
Olympic Photos, Galleries & Slideshows | Top Olympic Images. (2017, February 23). Retrieved April 26, 2017, from https://www.olympic.org/photos
Putin says claims of Russian doping “political” | Euronews. (2016, July 18). Retrieved April 25, 2017, from http://www.euronews.com/2016/07/18/putin-says-claims-of-russian-doping-political
Russia doping: Media see Putin behind sports scandal. (2016, July 19). BBC News. Retrieved from http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-36835781