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Olympic Reading

OpenCanada’s list of the top reads about the Games.

By: /
31 July, 2012
By: OpenCanada Staff

It’s that time again, when the world finds itself caring deeply about weightlifting, shot put, and fencing. But how to keep on top of all the Olympic action amid the flood of posts, articles, photo essays, and columns being spread around the Internet? Fortunately for you, OpenCanada has taken the time to compile a selection of recommended readings to help you navigate your way through the Games.

Keeping track of the Games:

Whether you are looking to be eye-deep in Olympic action or just want to keep up on the headlines, there’s a source for you. For the biggest events, check out The Atlantic’s 10 Most Anticipated Days on the Olympic Games Schedule. And if you missed the fact that a blind archer smashed the previous world record, The Guardian is there for you with its ongoing list of record-breaking moments at For a little more voice with your Olympic coverage, New York Times writers are blogging here. And for those who want more Canada in their updates, follow the CTV Olympic Twitter feed at @CTVOlympics.


Beyond the chest-thumping nationalism and crass consumerism, the Olympics are really about the athletes. TIME Magazine has compiled a list of 50 athletes to watch at the London Games. A photo essay from Foreign Policy features “the Middle East’s aspiring women in sport.” And for Canadian athletes to look out for, see this Huffington Post article.


Of course, the Olympics wouldn’t really be the Olympics without that crass consumerism. The Games are certainly big business. But is it smart business? The Atlantic‘s Andrew Zimbalist doesn’t think, at least not for the hosts. His article, 3 Reasons Why Hosting the Olympics Is a Loser’s Game, explains why. The Economist considers who the ultimate winners and losers are in this article. And then there’s the competition between the economists themselves to predict how many medals each nation will bring home, as explained by The Economisthere.


The Financial Times compiled a list of “Olympic Visualizations.” To that list we would add the FT‘s own Olympics In Numbers graphic at the bottom of this page. And Visual Loop’s Pinterest board has an extensive collection of Olympic-themed infographics.

Criticism and Controversy:

The IOC has long been the target of criticism and that hasn’t stopped with the London Games. This article from the New York Times blasts the organization for its apathetic and elitist leadership. It’s also technologically stunted – this TIME article asks whether the IOC is restricting the free speech of athletes when it cracks down on un-Olympic posts on Facebook and Twitter. Doping, of course, has been an ongoing source of Olympic drama. Here, Wired explains the cat-and-mouse game between dopers and those trying to stop them.

Should you be bored of the Olympics as is:

And now for something completely different, Foreign Policylists its picks for the strange sports it wishes were at the Games.

Before you click away, we’d like to ask you for a favour … 


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