Today marks the opening ceremonies of the 2012 Olympic Games.
Due to the time difference, the broadcast will be on a five-hour tape delay. By the time U.S viewers tune into watch the spectacle of the ceremony, the "live event" will have been over for hours.
Famed British director Danny Boyle, who is the mastermind behind the production, has been rightly adamant about keeping the ceremony details under wraps, leaving scant spoilers to those outside the production. However, as I am currently writing this story in Los Angeles, the opening ceremonies have already begun in London.
This gives anyone watching the ceremonies live the ability to reveal the sacred details of the ceremonies in real time through any means they'd like – be it Facebook, Twitter or any other form.
News organizations have begun writing stories and sending tweets, releasing information relevant to the current happenings during the ceremony. Sports Illustrated (and even Opposing Views), for instance, are revealing such information -- before the telecast -- in order to gain hits on their websites.
In many minds, media sites ruin the ceremony by releasing these spoilers. Questions over the ethical standpoints of this issue stand out. Should SI be able to spoil the viewing experience just to get more attention to its site?
In my opinion – not at all.
The opening ceremonies come only once every four years and are highly anticipated by an abundant amount of people all around the world. The viewing of the ceremony can provide special moments for many and should be cherished.
The opening and closing of the ceremony, along with the lighting of the torch, are some of the most storied events in sports lore. Regarding the 2012 ceremonies, everyone from Queen Elizabeth to James Bond to David Beckham have been linked in relation with the ceremony and, personally as a viewer, I don't want to know what happens before I watch it.
The ceremonies are supposed to be an event, one that is watched for its value, not just read about in a recap. You can't put the ceremonies in a boxscore, like you can do with a sporting event. The revealing of the ceremonies events is on par with giving away a movies spoilers, and no reputable news organization would do that. After months of anticipation, the last movie of Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy, the Dark Knight Rises recently came out in theatres.
The internet was abuzz on how the movie would tie up all the loose ends of all the previous movies, answering questions whether Batman would die or not. However, a moral person would never reveal the intimate details of the movie to someone who hadn't seen it, because it that's not right.
And that's what these news organizations are doing, just for the intention on gaining attention and earning more money. At the very least, outlets should clearly say "spoiler alert" before readers click on the article. That is a solve.
Yet with Twitter, there is nowhere to hide.