Canadian Olympic Commentator Forgets to Turn Off Mic, Insults Chinese Swimmer

A Canadian CBC Olympic commentator has angered netizens with the comments he made after the performance of a 14-year-old Chinese national athlete when he thought his microphone was turned off.

“That little 14-year-old from China dropped the ball, baby,” a Canadian CBC commentator said after the performance of a Chinese female swimming athlete at the Rio Olympics on August 10. He then says: “Too excited, went out like stink, and died like a pig. Thanks for that.”

The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) is the national television broadcaster and also Canada’s official broadcaster for the Olympic Games.

The comments, that were allegedly made by commentator Byron MacDonald, were soon picked up by Chinese netizens. They expressed their anger on social media, both through Weibo and through Twitter.

Various Chinese media also shared a video of the comments on Weibo and translated them into Chinese.

Many netizens were angered by the comments, and did not accept the apologies that were made by CBC through its official Olympics Twitter account.

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A message by Sina News about the incident was shared nearly 6000 times on Sina Weibo within 8 hours after it was posted. The topic became top trending as it was mentioned and commented on all over Weibo under the hashtag “Canadian Presenter Insults Chinese Athlete” (#加主播侮辱中国运动员#)

Some netizens called the comments a sign of “white man’s supremacy”, while others called on China’s government to do something: “I think the Chinese government should come out and say something, Chinese athletes are not being treated fairly at the Olympics and we should not be bullied like this!”

The 14-year-old Olympic is swimming athlete Ai Yanhan (艾衍含), who participated in the women’s 200m freestyle.

Many netizens seem to be not just angered over the fact the CBC commentator insulted an athlete, but especially over the fact that she is only 14 years old. There are no general age limits set for participating the Olympics.

[note: the video that accompanied this video unfortunately had to be removed due to the strict censorship..we mean copyright policies of the International Olympic Committee]

-By Manya Koetse

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Author

About the author: Manya Koetse is the editor-in-chief of www.whatsonweibo.com. She is a writer and consultant (Sinologist, MPhil) on social trends in China, with a focus on social media and digital developments, Sino-Japanese relations and gender issues. Contact at manya@whatsonweibo.com, or follow on Twitter.

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6 comments

He was just being himself, but obviously too carried away to turn off the mic. Ai Yanhan right now probably feels sorry for this random Canadian. I do.

How did you draw that conclusion? You assume because he said smack about the performance of one person at an International competition he is suddenly a white supremacist? No please, elaborate on what sort of critical thinking you applied here.

That he was stupid, I do not disagree. That his commentary was entirely unprofessional, I also agree with. But there is no evidence to support the rest of your comments.

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