As the Rio 2016 Olympic Games kick off-12 suggestions for stereotypical global media stories

As the Olympic Games in Rio are about to kick off, global media will once again have an opportunity to combine fairly apolitical reporting with some of the usually stories that are supposed to bring the host city closer to their home audience.
As Rio is located in the Southern hemisphere this is an excellent opportunity to rely on some of the (stereo)typical reporting approaches we already enjoyed during the FIFA World Cup in South Africa in 2010.

For your convenience I tried to add some international development spin, a mild dose of othering and at the same time avoid complex structural issues around inequality or, God forbid, political complexity and the capitalistic dynamics of global sports events.

So here are 12 leads, headlines or stories that you will likely encounter in similar ways in global media outlets in the next few weeks:

· A year ago (NAME) fled Syria, but know s/he is realizing her/his dream and compete in (sport) for (European) country

· As the global attention is focusing on Rio, our outlet spoke with the 80-year old taxi driver/street cleaner/beach vendor who has been witnessing the city changing for the past 47 years

· How one charity wants to ensure the sustainability of sports venue/athletes’ accommodation and convert them into community facilities

· How one man/woman defied the Olympic construction boom (picture of person standing in front of modest house/ ‘hut’ with lots of concrete constructions in the background)

· Outside the global spotlight, this local organization has been engaging with children in (sport relevant for specific venue or specific day of competition)

· (NAME) grew up (ideally ‘in the slums/favelas’) just 1 mile from the stadium and now s/he is competing in (sport) for her/his Brazil

· S/he may be a big star in (globally attractive sport), but (NAME) is spending her/his free-time teaching children in the favelas how to be confident boys/girls

· We always think about beaches and parties, but Rio also has a dark side (drugs, crime, corruption)

· Despite its dark side (drugs, crime, corruption), people in Rio know how to have a good time and make the world feel at home

· Something on the ‘growing pollution’ problem prior to major outdoor events (marathon, cycling etc.)

· Her/his parent/grand parents left Brazil many years ago, but now it is time for (NAME) to explore her/his Brazilian roots (picture of sports star sitting opposite a toothless wrinkly old lady; second picture of sports star wandering around city where ancestors had small shop etc.)

· How one company/major sponsor is giving back to the community (CSR/beautifying project featuring children)

This is by far not an exhaustive list-so feel free to add your story or headline in the comments below!

You are welcome, parachuting journalists ;)!


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