Some Things Are Not Allowed! The Olympics are Important!

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The Olympic flame from NBC coverage of the 2012 London Olympics opening ceremony
The Olympic flame from NBC coverage of the 2012 London Olympics opening ceremony
The Olympic flame from NBC coverage of the 2012 London Olympics opening ceremony

While watching the NBC coverage of the 2012 London Olympics opening ceremony tonight, I became really aware that the commentators were annoying me. I missed the first half hour, so I Google’d the names of the hosts. It’s Matt Lauer and Merideth Viera!

I became more and more conscious of their snide comments about the proceedings. They both seemed Blasé about the whole thing.

Meanwhile, both Shelly and I were choked up a bit. This type of thing doesn’t happen very often. The whole world is watching. It’s quite fantastic!

Not only that, but a lot of people put their hearts into it. Meanwhile, Matt and Meredith’s attitude was: PFFT!

The worst part – they opened their mouths and that attitude came out.

Some things are not allowed!

You can’t denigrate someone’s religion to their face. You can’t disrespect the President. You can’t talk about someone’s mother. You can’t claim Bert and Erny were gay. You can’t talk trash about Elvis. You can’t disrespect and abandon your family. You can’t generalize people …

and you cannot act like a snob toward the Olympics!

Matt and Meredith both sounded hyper-critical.

Lately I feel like the guy who allows things. Shelly and I have a running joke. She asks, “should I get a bottle of wine?” I say, “I’ll allow it!” We laugh. I’ve been doing it a lot lately.

Looking out at what’s going on in the world. I found there’s a lot of things I won’t allow. I wish I could really swing the pendulum on them. Take the NBC 2012 London Olympics Opening Ceremony coverage. It’s representative of this new attitude society has towards self-aggrandizement and denigration of others, their thoughts, ideas, and creations. To me, a child of the 70’s and 80’s – its odd and un-welcomed. I disallow it! Vehemently!

I may make judgments about marketing campaigns that certain companies are doing, but I do it so that those companies can know what is not working, change it, and make money. I don’t do it with malicious intent. My goal is to help businesses large and small.

That’s why I’m writing about Matt Lauer and Meredith Viera. NBC sells entertainment. Their programming attracts eyes and advertisers pay NBC good money to be where the eyes are. NBC’s product is the technically demanding job of capturing the Olympics, but to also have hosts that do not offend anyone. Hosts are sales people. They are selling NBC. They are selling the Olympics. They are selling the experience. Matt Lauer and Meredith Viera aren’t doing a very good job!

Luckily, Bob Costas came back in – he’s saving it! How? He’s selling it and giving it the importance it deserves.

EDIT: To prove this attitude is part of our culture now, a McDonald’s commercial comes on and a girl tells a female olympic athlete that if she wins, she gets free stuff at McDonald’s. OK. Then the female athlete starts punching a punching bag. The girl says, “any time you want to start.” The athlete punches harder. The girl says, “Sting like a gnat huh?” They breakaway to the products and come back to the girl who is sitting down. She says to the athlete, “In Romania they train in the snow!”

Uhm, RUDE! I understand that it was a stab at humor. It’s not very good really. It breaks at least 2 of my marketing rules:

  • Marketing rule #1 : Seek to make a connection.
  • Marketing rule #27: It’s only funny once!
Michael Miller

Michael Miller

Mike Miller is the co-owner of, a Digital Marketing Agency in Atlanta, Georgia that focuses on aligning sales and marketing for exponentially greater results. Michael’s mission is helping small business owners understand, and organize their marketing so they can make money and grow. Mindwhirl helps business owners plan and implement effective, profitable marketing campaigns and sales programs. If you need more sales, we know how to get leads and grow businesses. Call us today at (770) 295-8660, or email Mike at

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