Analysis of XX Commonwealth Games Host Broadcast Coverage, Online Media and Official Digital Channels

This reports analyses the coverage of the XX Commonwealth Games by the Games’ Host Broadcasters, the use of the official Glasgow 2014 websites, and associated social media.

6. Summary and Conclusion

6.1 Glasgow 2014 estimated a potential global audience reach of 1.5 billion worldwide, through a range of international television and radio channels. This included a number of regions outwith the Commonwealth including Asia and the USA, some of which had broadcast coverage for the first time.

6.2 There were 25.8 million page views of the website over the 12 days between 23 July and 3 August 2014 from 228 countries. On 23 July there were over 2.3 million page views alone.

6.3 Over 40% of users of were from the UK (3.5 million from England, followed by 1.7 million from Scotland), followed by almost 19% being from India and just over 13% from Australia. Outside the Commonwealth, the USA had the 5th highest number of visits equating to 3.5% of the visits to the site. Outside this top 10 other countries made up 8.2% of visits.

6.4 There were just over 1 million visits to during the Opening Ceremony with India equating to 23.7% of these. Google searches for 'Scottish Terrier' increased dramatically after the Opening Ceremony with searches for 'Red Arrows' flypast increasing in line with Glasgow 2014. The most popular site content trends within the schedule were Rugby sevens followed by Athletics, netball, aquatics, hockey and finally boxing. Peak traffic on the Glasgow 2014's website was observed on 3rd August.

6.5 Over the Games Time period, people spent 25.8 million minutes watching the Games on YouTube via the Games official YouTube channel This equates to 49 years of viewing.

6.6 Between 14 June 2014 (when the Queen's Baton arrived back in Scotland beginning its Scottish Relay leg) and 6 August 2014 (when the Athletes' Village closed to competitors), there were 3.2 million mentions of the Commonwealth Games and associated keywords on social media in the English language from 834,000 unique sources. On average this was 64,000 mentions per day across the period.

6.7 The top 10 tweets, in terms of reach, were HM The Queen's so-called 'photo bomb' moments along with a range of sporting moments for medal winners including: Geraint Thomas winning gold for Wales in the cycling road race; netball (Jamaica claiming bronze and Australia gold); hockey (Australia winning gold); women's boxing (with England winning gold and Northern Ireland silver); women's weightlifting (India winning gold); England ending at the top of the medals table; Scotland finishing fourth on the medals table; and men's boxing gold for Ireland.

6.8 The most shared media content connected to the Games was dominated by the BBC digital output, with eight out of ten of the most linked media between 14 June and 6 August 2014. HM The Queen's 'photo bomb' moment story was the most shared (over 11,500 times), and of the most linked media still available to view, daily report pages for days 7, 2, 5 and 3 of the BBC Online site ranks the highest. In addition, the light hearted BBC Quiz 'which sport are you made for?' is also in the top 10.

6.9 In terms of the highest trending sporting events Twitter hash tags of the year for the UK, #CommonwealthGames was second, with the World Cup 2014 hash tag in first position and #Glasgow2014 in sixth place (Twitter, 2014).

6.10 In terms of host broadcast coverage, online media and official digital channels the XX Commonwealth Games were of huge interest globally not just within the Commonwealth but outwith it, particularly in India. In Twitter, the Commonwealth Games was within the top 10 highest trending sporting events hash tags of the year. The level of social media messages around the Games shows a keen interest in the Games that was predominantly positive, focused on the sporting action, and created shared iconic moments relating to the location of the Games, the monarchy, key moments from the Opening Ceremony, and the host city. It is plausible to assume from this that XX Commonwealth Games broadcast coverage and social media interactions made a positive contribution to the reputation of Scotland and Glasgow internationally, as well as the UK as a whole.


Email: Niamh O'Connor

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