The World Will be Watching the 2000 Summer Olympic Games on Television

In 38 of the 39 countries included in our World Poll, at least half of adults surveyed said that they are "very interested" or "somewhat interested" in watching the Sydney Olympics on television

The latest Angus Reid World Poll, conducted in 39 countries from mid June to early July of 2000, examined people's interest in watching the upcoming 2000 Summer Olympics, which will be held in Sydney, Australia this September, on television.

In 1896, the modern Olympic Games were born in Athens, Greece, ending a drought of international athletic competition that had lasted over 1,500 years. The dream of uniting the world through sports became a reality, as 280 athletes from 13 countries competed in 45 events at the first modern Summer Olympics. One hundred years later, in the 1996 Summer Games held in Atlanta, more than 10,000 athletes representing 197 countries pushed the limits of human physical excellence in 271 events. This September's 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney are expected to write a new chapter in the grand history of the Olympic Games.

The findings of the Angus Reid Group's latest World Poll indicate that people all around the world will be watching the Summer Games on television. In fact, in 38 of the 39 countries included in our World Poll, at least half of adults surveyed said that they are "very interested" or "somewhat interested" in watching the Sydney Olympics on television, including 14 countries where no less than three-quarters expressed a high level of interest.

According to the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Olympic coverage will be broadcast to practically the entire world, reaching 3.7 billion people of the 3.9 billion people in the world who have access to television. Total Viewer Hours are expected to eclipse 40 billion viewer hours as a result of increased coverage, reach, and interest in the Olympic Games.

(please download PDF's above for additional information)


"To have this much interest registered so far out in advance of the Olympic Games bodes very well for Olympic viewership," said Andrew Grenville, Senior Vice-President of Angus Reid. "You can only expect these numbers to grow as the excitement of the Games build and broadcaster promotions roll out."

  • In 38 of the 39 countries surveyed at least half of the World Poll respondents said they are "very interested" or "somewhat interested" in watching the 2000 Summer Olympics on television.
  • Not surprisingly, the host Australians (46%) were among the most likely to say that they are "very interested" in watching the Summer Olympics on television. People in national markets as varied as urban Uzbekistan (51%), urban Brazil (48%), Ireland (47%) and Lithuania (44%) also expressed a high level of interest in taking in the Games on television.
  • People in Japan, where the 1998 and 1972 Winter Games as well as the 1964 Summer Games were held, were most likely to express an overall high level of interest in catching the Sydney Olympics on television: a total of 87 percent of the Japanese people surveyed said they are very or somewhat interested in viewing the 2000 Games on television.
  • Other countries where interest in viewing the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney is particularly high include: Slovakia (83%); Finland (80%), which hosted the 1952 Summer Games; South Korea (81%), where the 1988 Summer Olympics were held; Greece (79%), where the Summer Games were born in 1896; Ireland (80%); and, Lithuania (80%).
  • In seven other countries, about three-quarters of the adults surveyed by the World Poll indicated that they are very or somewhat interested in watching the Sydney Olympics on TV next month: urban China (79%); Estonia (78%); urban Uzbekistan (78%); host country Australia (77%); Latvia (77%); Slovenia (76%); Canada (75%), where the 1988 Winter Games and 1976 Summer Games were held; and the U.S. (72%), which hosted the 1996 and 1984 Summer Games as well as the 1980 Winter Games.


  • Looking at global regions rather than individual countries, fully eight in ten (81%) people in the five Asian countries surveyed in this latest World Poll said that they are very or somewhat interested in watching the 2000 Summer Olympics, as well as seven in ten (72%) North Americans.
  • Interest in catching the Summer Games on television is high across Europe as well: 66 percent of respondents in our Eastern Europe/N.I.S. country grouping and 65 percent in Western Europe expressed a high level of interest in seeing the Games on television. Although somewhat less enthusiastic than other regions, a solid majority of six in ten (61%) Latin Americans are interested in watching the Sydney Olympic Games on TV.

For further information about this poll, please contact:

Dan Maceluch Vice President The Angus Reid Group (604) 893-1635

Additional information can be found at: The International Olympic Committee's Website or in the PDF's at the top of this page.

These results emerged from an international public opinion survey conducted by the Angus Reid Group. This poll involved interviews among a total of 20,170 adults in 39 countries. Data collection was carried out from mid June to early July 2000.

The target sample size was 500 for each country, with the exception of a 1,000 sample size in the United States. In 32 of the 39 countries, the survey sample provided national representation; in the other eight countries - Brazil, Chile, China, India, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Russia and Uzbekistan - the survey samples are urban-only. In-person, door-to-door interviewing was used in these eight countries as well as in Argentina, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Philippines, Poland, Romania and Ukraine. Telephone interviewing was used in all other countries. The complete data set was statistically weighted so that the overall survey results reflect the proportional populations of the countries/urban areas in the global sample.

The Angus Reid Group is Canada's premier market research and public opinion polling firm with offices across Canada and the United States. The company also provides international clients with a regularly scheduled quarterly global polling program wherein upwards of 30 countries over a two-month timeframe are sampled for opinions on private sector and public matters. The Angus Reid Group also publishes, on a quarterly basis, the World Monitor - a digest of world public opinion trends and insights gleaned from its world polling activities.

Angus Reid Group is part of the Paris-based Ipsos research company - one of the world's largest social and marketing research firms.

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