Only 46 percent of teens surveyed by Harris Interactive showed any interest in watching the Olympics. And if teens are indeed abstaining, it's not because they think that the Olympics are a crass, greedy commercial enterprise -- in fact, 71 percent of those polled "were likely to agree that the games are about more than merely medals and marketing," according to Harris Interactive. So why won't they watch? Because it's not convenient for them.
"Teens want quick-hitting videos," says Bill Carter, a partner at youth marketing agency Fuse Marketing. "They don't want the lead-up and they don't want the analysis. They just want the video. And I'm optimistic that NBC is doing delivering this better than they have before. Although, to watch the [mens freestyle swimming] relay this morning, I still had to download 11 minutes of video, and fast forward through the first 6 minutes to get to the race."
Its hard to know what's going on without actually talking to a lot of teens and getting some real data. But at first glance, it could be that NBC's crappy coverage (its need to talk about only Americans, its need to do heart-wrenching bios of every athlete (He stubbed his toe last week, but he's determined to come back and win for his country.), and its general need to blather mindlessly) could be the nail that kills the Olympics for the media savvy.
Or maybe I'm just projecting?