Archive for Thursday, March 7, 2002

Poor coverage

March 7, 2002


To the editor:

The Lawrence Journal-World's coverage of the 2002 Olympic Winter Games was disappointing. In addition to the Journal-World, my family receives The New York Times on a regular basis, and if it were not for that paper and NBC's television coverage of the games I might have a highly unbalanced picture of the Olympics.

Journal-World readers who do not receive the New York Times and who have not been following the Olympics on TV may be interested to know that countries other than the United States did participate. The Journal-World has shown photographs of nearly every American athlete in Salt Lake City, but one of the very few photos I noticed of a foreign athlete was one in which the foreign athlete, Satoru Terao of Japan, was only partially in the picture, alongside an American. When the Canadians won the gold medal in hockey, the Journal-World showed a photograph of American hockey players with their silver medals on the front page. The Canadian team was not even shown. Germany won the most medals in the Olympics, but nowhere in the paper have I seen them pictured.

I have also experienced the frequent disappointment of turning to the sports section for further coverage of the Olympics, only to find long articles discussing the latest Kansas University and local high school games. I myself am a KU fan and a high school student, but I think the Olympics are significantly more noteworthy than KU's victory over Nebraska, if solely because the winter Olympics occur only every four years.

None of this is meant to say that American victories in the games should not be celebrated. In the final medal count, the Americans came in second with thirty-four medals, only one less than Germany. This is a marvelous accomplishment, and the American athletes deserve to be honored for it, but shouldn't we also honor all the athletes from other countries who did just as excellent a job? I hope for better coverage of the 2004 summer Olympics.

Natalia Heilke,


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