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Articles on Sochi 2014

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BFFs: IOC President Thomas Bach and Vladimir Putin. David Goldman/AP

Russia and the IOC are the perfect match

Nationalism is the main event at any Olympic Games, and the Olympic industry relies on the goosebumps effects of the sporting spectacle to divert public attention from its less attractive underbelly, in…
Australian rugby star David Pocock is among the international sportspeople supporting the Principle 6 campaign – citing the Olympic Charter – against Russia’s anti-gay laws. Twitter/@pocockdavid

Sport, Sochi and the rising challenge of the activist athlete

What happens off the field stays off the track and the dais but plays OK at the press conference – that is the rather convoluted message from International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Thomas Bach…
This old thing? Just found it lying around in the shed. Andrew Milligan/PA

Why would British athletes choose winter sports?

The British terrain and climate are not really designed for winter sports – there are few mountains suitable for skiing and our winters simply aren’t cold enough. Yet Team GB will be taking a 56-strong…
Matt Graham and Brodie Summers – second from right and far right – are two of 30 Aussie Olympians with tertiary links this year. EPA/Sergei Ilnitsky

Cool to be a nerd: why the highly educated Australian Sochi team?

The Australian team currently gathered in Sochi, Russia for the Winter Games is probably the most highly educated team of Australian athletes ever assembled for an Olympic games. Of the 60 athletes selected…
If this can be a winter wonderland, freedom of speech can exist in Russia. Ganoshenko Roman

Press freedom at Sochi is more than a distant Olympic dream

Yes, there they were: palm trees in the place where a country known for its cruelly cold winters was planning to hold the Winter Olympics. What a treat it was to feel the mild air of the Black Sea coast…
Bavaria beer gets some unofficial airtime. Martin Rickett/PA

Models, Messi and wacky races: the art of ambush marketing

On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much to link Lionel Messi’s choice of drink with a Black Sea beach resort, a former holiday destination of Russian communist leaders. And yet over the next six…
Megaevents create megaholes in treasuries. evilmutent

Olympic costs always overrun, but nobody really cares

As we inch towards the start of the winter Olympics in Sochi, Putin’s government would be happy that soon they won’t have…
This ‘skating palace’ was a snip at $98m. Atos International

Olympic-style mega-events reach new frontiers, at a cost

There is a tendency – almost a law of nature – that governs the way the costs of large-scale international events such as the football World Cup and Olympic Games far outstrip the initial forecasts of…
Recent revelations about the surveillance surrounding the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, are distinctly Orwellian. David Blackwell.

The Sochi Winter Olympics and the spectacle of surveillance

If you’re thinking about planning a trip to Russia for the Winter Olympic Games in February next year, prepare to have every aspect of your communications monitored under “the most invasive and systematic…
Who was in charge of selling tickets again? Bescker

Sochi scandals threaten a Russian sporting renaissance

With the 2014 Winter Olympic Games fewer than six months away, the last thing Russia needs is another scandal. But that is exactly what the organisers have got. The latest controversy involves migrants…
He has a point, you know. Anthony Devlin/PA

Academics should stand with Fry against anti-gay Russia

Stephen Fry’s viral open letter calling for “an absolute ban” on the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi over Russia’s controversial new anti-homosexuality laws was a clarion call for activists. But it should…

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