Daily Archives: March 4, 2010

One Way Ticket?

There’s been a bit of grumbling about the putative ticketing policy for the 2010 [doh! that should of course be 2012] Olympics, with claims that tickets can’t be reserved for Londoners because of the EU’s competition policy. It’s kind of ironic, for several reasons.

1) The full ticketing policy hasn’t even been announced yet.

2) The EU policy being referred to is based on complaints from previous big sporting occasions around Europe, where fans, including from the UK, have complained that they were discriminated against buying tickets for events such as the European Championships, or the World Cup.

3) A number of tickets are reserved for “the Olympic family” whatever that means – a reservation that appears to have been 40% in Sydney. I think that and the issue of agencies buying up tickets will be a much bigger problem than Europe-wide rules on access – and in the case of the agencies, they’d get the tickets even if there were a UK-only allocation.

Reading the comments on the BBC article about this, some very good points are made about how exactly competition law would affect this. I’m checking out the validity of some of those points and will add something when I find that out.

I live in what will be an Olympic borough (Greenwich) and I look forward to going and watching archery and shooting and modern pentathlon and whatever else will be there, and I suspect that I won’t be fighting with hordes of people over from France or Portugal or wherever. Certainly my experience at the Rugby World Cup in France in 2007 was that the overwhelming majority of spectators were from France. But I really appreciated the fact that I could book my tickets from Belgium, with no problem.

I hope I’m wrong, but let’s remember this discussion if and when there are negative media stories about empty seats at Olympic events…

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Links 4 March 2010

Thought provoking article from Adrian Hamilton in the Independent on the whole Greece/Eurozone/UK  thing

Some useful information on saving energy from the Guardian

Some b-roll of Commissioner Ashton in Haiti. Council TV Newsroom is looking pretty good!

And as it was getting tweeted about earlier, here’s a link to our new(ish) site which is regularly updated with “Euromyths” and our letters to the editor – which don’t always get printed, so at least there’s a trace.

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Every Day I Write the Book

It’s World Book Day today. I’m sure you knew that. We’re having a book swap in our office – people have brought in books they are happy to give away, others can take what they want, and anything left over goes to a charity shop. At home we’re in the middle of having new book shelving up, and we have so many books as it is that I think I’d be in the spare room if I brought any more in! But it’s a great idea. There’s a nice article about World Book Day over on europe.org.uk which mentions the European Literature Night we’re involved with in May. So Happy World Book Day to everyone. Here’s a question – what’s the one book you would recommend everyone read before they die? I guess mine would be (gosh this is quite difficult, isn’t it…) erm… probably Northern Lights (and the other His Dark Materials books) by Philip Pullman.

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