The 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics are well and truly underway, albeit a year late. The delay was of course down to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, with Japan currently grappling with a fifth wave of infections.
Despite the latest surge, it appears as if the show will go on, with the Olympic organizers’ anti-infection measures set to stay firmly in place. These include keeping athletes’ teams as small as possible, with friends and family asked to stay in their home countries instead of traveling to the host nation to offer their support in person.
Hoping to ease the disappointment of separation, Athlete365, an International Olympic Committee initiative set up by athletes to support one another, created Athlete Moment.
Athlete Moment lets winning athletes at select Olympic events speak to loved ones via a Zoom-like call just seconds after their victory and also after the medal ceremony. You may have already seen it in action at the Tokyo Aquatics Center, which is hosting the Games’ swimming events, though 15 other sports are also involved, including athletics, basketball, BMX racing, and several gymnastics events.
We know how important the support of your loved ones is. 💙
Athlete Moment gives you the opportunity to virtually connect with your friends and family following your final competition in Tokyo.
— Athlete365 (@Athlete365) July 7, 2021
“The Athlete Moment will bring together you, your families, and friends in a virtual hug that will reach around the world,” Athlete365 says on the webpage where competitors can sign up to the feature.
Once they do so, they’ll receive a link to share with up to five individuals or small groups. If the athlete wins their competition, the link will go live and they’ll be able to briefly chat with loved ones via a large display placed inside the venue.
Of course, athletes can easily jump on their smartphones and fire up a video call later on, but Athlete Moment offers winners a chance for a quick exchange just moments after a race or contest finishes.
In a video promoting the feature, Athlete365 says, “The whole experience lasts for a little over a minute, but the memories will last for a lifetime.”
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