NBC’s primetime Olympic broadcast on Saturday, July 24, 2021, featured men’s and women’s swimming, where Team USA chalked up 6 medals. Chase Kalisz earned the first gold medal for the United States in the 400 Individual Medley. Americans Jay Litherland, Kieran Smith, Emma Weyant, and Hali Flickinger also medalled, while the US women’s 4×100 freestyle relay posted a bronze medal. Women’s beach volleyball, men’s gymnastics, and the debut of men’s street skateboarding were also featured in primetime.
Overall, men’s events received 54.79% of the coverage on Saturday night, compared to 45.21% for women. Mixed sex events did not receive any coverage.
After two days, when mixed sex events are excluded, men have received 52.58% of the total coverage, compared to 47.42% for women.
Regular updates about NBC’s coverage of men and women athletes will be posted throughout the 2021 Tokyo Summer Games on FiveRingTV.com. Additional updates will be posted on the @FiveRingTV Twitter feed. A mid-Olympic report, with complete sport-by-sport coverage breakdowns, will also be issued.
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* The percentage of primetime devoted to men’s, women’s and mixed sex sports was calculated by a single researcher, utilizing a stopwatch and DVD or DVR time codes, measuring (to the millisecond) the total amount of time devoted to each event. Any time spent at the actual athletic site, on a profile about an athlete, promos about a specific athlete or sport, and host commentary about a specific sport or athlete was recorded. Olympic coverage on cable networks and live streaming was not included. Network overruns beyond 11:00pm up to the break for local news are included within the calculations.
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Olympic Television: Broadcasting the Biggest Show on Earth contains a detailed 20-year examination of how male and female athletes have been covered within primetime Olympic broadcasts. The book also has analyses of how race/ethnicity and nationality impact Olympic coverage, interviews with NBC personnel about the content and production of Olympic broadcasts, and a detailed overview of Olympic television history. Published by Routledge, it is available in hardcover, paperback and ebook formats at Amazon.com, the Routledge website, and other outlets.