2020 Tokyo Olympics: Former Olympian Lolo Jones Weighs In on Why Viewers Are Tuning Out

by Joe Rutland

Former Olympian Lolo Jones has some thoughts on why TV viewers are not watching the 2020 Tokyo Olympics as much as in the past.

“The time zone difference is incredible,” Jones said in an article from Fox News. “You’re dealing with 13, 14 hours, so most of the events are finished by the time we wake up in America. I think that took a lot of the…fun out of it.”

While Jones talked about the time issues with the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, she added that the lack of fans present may be another reason ratings are low. Also, famous athletes connected to the Olympics like Michael Phelps and Usain Bolt have retired. 

Jones Said Lack Of Support Hurts Athletes At 2020 Tokyo Olympics

“Not only is it the fans with COVID protocols, [but] they don’t have their family and friends there, and this is what the Olympics is all about,” Jones added. “Whether they go there and win a medal…celebrate with their family after or they go there and lose…they need that support and that comfort. It’s really tough on these athletes.”

Data from Comcast-owned NBCUniversal released on Saturday said the 2020 Tokyo Olympics low ratings are reportedly the smallest audience for a network broadcast in the past 33 years.

For her sake, Jones knows a little about competing in both the Summer Olympics and Winter Olympics, too. Back at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, she was the favorite heading into the women’s 100-meter hurdles. Jones ended up finishing in seventh place after tripping on the next-to-last hurdle. She is a brakewoman for the U.S. bobsledding team and competed in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.

When it comes to having some knowledge about what might be happening with the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, then Jones can tap into her own experiences.

Beyond her athletic exploits, Lolo Jones has competed on TV shows like Dancing with the Stars.

Viewers Not Pleased With How Many Commercials Are Being Shown

As if viewers needed another reason to be upset over coverage of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, then add the number of commercials to the list of complaints.

Imagine watching the Olympics and a commercial popped up with footage from the Games you just watched a couple of hours earlier. It may sound redundant, but that’s exactly what Comcast had planned out for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Comcast ran an advertisement on Friday night that included footage from the Opening Ceremony. That took place on Friday morning, well before the commercial hit the air. The ad included snaps of Team USA entering the venue for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

It’s mind-boggling to viewers and no amount of explanation probably will make sense to many of them. Get ready for more griping.