TV Coverage of Beijing 2008 Paralympics Exceeds Expectations

Beijing, China - With a total of 29 rightsholders covering more than 75 countries worldwide, from all regions (Africa, America, Asia, Europe and Oceania), the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games has the largest number of rightsholding broadcasters in the history of the Parlaympic Games. Currently, the broadcaster with the winning number of hours is China’s CCTV and BTV, with more than 22 hours of Paralympic Games daily on different channels. This includes live programmes, as well as news. 15 Sep 2008 By IPC

China Central Television (CCTV) is a television network of the People’s Republic of China and has a network of 18 channels broadcasting different programming, reaching more than a billion viewers on the Chinese mainland. More than 800 accredited journalists are working for the Paralympic Games. All of this adds up to more than 250 hours of broadcasting.

Further examples include the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), who has a total of 36 broadcasters from 30 different countries in Beijing. This equals more than 800 accredited journalists, and two international feeds. One feed is for team sports, and the other is for individual sports that are both distributed through the Eurovision network. Without having programme information from all rightsholding broadcasters, the total number of hours broadcasted will easily exceed 1,000. The well-known British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) had an average of 2.2 million viewers for the Opening Ceremony, with a peak of 2.7 million. This equals a market share of 21.7%. Overall, the market share is 9-10%. In Germany, ARD and ZDF are broadcasting the Paralympics with ARD broadcasting on odd days and ZDF on even days. Until 11 September, ARD broadcasted a total of 426 minutes, with an average audience of 840,000 viewers per day. This is a market share of 7.7%, on 7, 9 and 11 September. On 8 and 10 September, ZDF aired a total of 360 minutes, with an average audience of 770,000 viewers per day. This is a market share of 9.4%.

MediaCorp TV’s Channel 5, which is a 24-hour English-language television channel based in Singapore, is broadcasting the Paralympic Games in the form of highlights everyday from 18:00-19:00 until 17 September. This includes, for the first time, the Opening and Closing Ceremony. A delayed telecast of the Opening Ceremony aired on Channel 5 last Friday, 12 September. A delayed telecast of the Closing Ceremony will air Wednesday, 17 September at 22:00. All of the highlights and both ceremonies will also be on TVMobile.

Terra Networks is offering extensive live coverage online, as well as on-demand programming in Spanish and Portuguese. Terra is an Internet multinational company with headquarters in Spain, operating both as a web portal and/or an internet access provider in 16 Latin American countries. The agreement with Terra provides people in Latin America with the opportunity to watch the Paralympic Games free of charge.

The Australian Broadcasting Corporation, or ABC, is also providing coverage of the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games. The broadcaster is showing daily highlights at 18:00, and pulling in an average audience of over 400,000 viewers.

For more information about the Paralympic Games, please visit