Misc. media notes from around and around

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From the Associated Press:

Two broadcasters are facing criticism for derogatory comments made about American figure skater Johnny Weir.

The Quebec Gay and Lesbian Council has demanded a public apology from French-language broadcaster RDS after one commentator said Weir hurts figure skating’s image and another said Weir should be made to take a gender test.

The remarks were “outrageous” and “homophobic,” CQGL said in a statement on its Web site.

Weir has repeatedly avoided questions about his sexual orientation in the past, saying it’s no one’s business and it has no bearing on what he does as an athlete. He is aware of the comments, agent Tara Modlin said Monday.

“The comment is so inappropriate that we will not even justify it with a response,” U.S. Olympic Committee CEO Scott Blackmun said.

Australia’s Channel Nine has reportedly gotten complaints from viewers after two of its hosts joked about the masculinity of Weir and other male skaters.

From Darren Rovell at CNBC.com:

For the 30-year anniversary of Miracle on Ice, we sat down with the game’s play-by-play announcer, Al Michaels:

Q: “Do You Believe In Miracles” is arguably the most famous call of all-time in sports. How do you come up with that?

AM: I came up with it from my heart I guess. I know somebody wrote recently that it was the nine-year-old in me. I love sports and you can’t think of something like that beforehand.

Q: So, what have those words been worth it to you?

AM: Certainly it’s a nice signature I guess. People love to talk about it. For me the irony was I was at ABC, it was my fourth year at ABC and I’m in my mid-thirties at that point,. I was on a fast track to begin with on a staff with Howard Cosell, Jim McKay, Frank Gifford, Keith Jackson. They bring me in and I’m the up and coming guy. I had done the World Series in 1979, so it wasn’t like I came out of nowhere and this happened. Now this what great, no question about it, but I was kind of moving along on a track that was going to let me do a lot of the big events at ABC. But, in terms of capitalizing on it, when I go out to give a speech its what people want to hear. It gives me something to talk about.

From NBC’s media relations department:

The top 10 metered markets as far as Neilsen ratings for the Winter Olympics over the last 10 days:

1. Milwaukee, 22.8/35
2. Denver, 22.7/37
3. Salt Lake City, 22.4/38
4. Seattle, 21.0/38
5. Minneapolis, 20.5/35
T6. St. Louis, 19.4/30
T6. Columbus, 19.4/30
8. San Diego, 19.1/32
9. Portland, 18.8/34
10. West Palm Beach, 18.7/27
11. Cleveland, 18.1/28
12. Kansas City, 18.0/27
13. Nashville, 17.7/26
14. Boston, 17.6/31
T15. Phoenix, 17.3/28
T15. Providence, 17.3/29
17. Oklahoma City, 17.2/26
T18. Austin, 17.1/28
T18. Tulsa, 17.1/25
T18. Ft. Myers, 17.1/27
T21. Sacramento, 17.0/30
T21. Cincinnati, 17.0/26
23. Washington D.C., 16.8/27
24. Richmond, 16.7/25
25. Indianapolis, 16.6/27

Los Angeles is No. 48 at 13.8/25

From the Associated Press:

Viewers tuning in to the start of the women’s figure skating competition Tuesday may notice something different coming from NBC’s booth — silence.

Scott Hamilton said he and partners Tom Hammond and Sandra Bezic have made a special effort this Olympics to keep quiet during performances, except to interject a point or two.

That will continue with the women’s event, generally considered the television showcase of the Olympics.

“There are so many details happening during these performances that we’re keeping track of,” Hamilton said, “but for us to throw that in front of an audience, especially when a majority of your audience is an every-four-year viewer, I think it would be intrusive and confusing and so complicated that no one would enjoy the event.”

He said bosses, including NBC Olympics chief Dick Ebersol, wanted to cut down on verbal clutter for artistic events. Because the competition is presented live on the East Coast, there’s no opportunity for editing.

Viewers could also drown in technicalities because of a new scoring system, which already had a big impact on men’s figure skating.

“We’ll give just enough information and let the performances speak on their own merits,” he said.

Hamilton said five or six women could legitimately compete for medals. But many of the women are evenly matched, the scoring system is a wild card and in recent Olympics favorites have not reacted well to the pressures of the big stage.

“Handicapping is almost irresponsible,” he said.

From the Associated Press:

The United States’ thrilling 5-3 men’s hockey victory over Canada set or tied records in two countries.

It was the most-watched sporting event in Canadian television history, according to the partnership of Canadian networks airing the games. An estimated 10.6 million people watched the game north of the border — many of them bitterly disappointed.

In the U.S., the game was televised live on the MSNBC cable network, where it was seen by 8.2 million people, according to the Nielsen Co. That ties Election Night 2008 as the most-watched event on that network, Nielsen said.

NBC offered only a taste of the game — less than a minute. NBC’s prime-time Olympics coverage was seen by 23.3 million. With stiff competition from its own sister network, that was below NBC’s average for the Vancouver Games.

From Awful Announcing.com:

Dana Jacobsen, apologizing again:

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