Men’s sports received just over 55 percent of the coverage during NBC’s primetime Olympic broadcast on Monday, February 7, 2022.
The two men’s events that drove the coverage were figure skating and alpine skiing. Figure skating had 1 hour and 9 minutes of airtime focused on the men’s short program, where Team USA’s Nathan Chen set a world record by scoring 113.97 points. There was also nearly 50 minutes of men’s alpine skiing as Team USA’s Ryan Cochran-Siegle won the silver medal in the Super G.
Three women’s events had at least a minute of coverage. Freestyle skiing clocked in at 1 hour and 1 minute for the Big Air final. Speed skating had 20 minutes for the 1500 meter races, and short track speed skating had 15 minutes with the 500 meter semifinals and finals.
No mixed sex events aired on Monday night’s primetime broadcast.
Overall, coverage of men’s events accounted for 55.08% of NBC’s primetime Olympic broadcast. Women’s events received 44.92% of NBC’s coverage. Mixed sex events (e.g., ice dancing) received zero coverage.
After 5 nights, when mixed sex events are excluded, men’s events have received 42.84% of NBC’s primetime broadcast coverage compared to 57.16% for women’s events.
Regular updates about NBC’s coverage of men and women athletes will be posted throughout the 2022 Beijing Winter Games on FiveRingTV.com. Additional updates will also 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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Method: 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.