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Putin probably missed Olympics rings glitch


SOCHI, Russia (AP) - It was the biggest glitch of the Olympics opening ceremony, and odds are Russia's president missed it.

Photos taken by The Associated Press show that Vladimir Putin, about to emerge into the Olympic stadium, was facing away from a monitor that showed the opening ceremony of the Sochi Games while it unfolded. He almost certainly didn't see footage of a glitch that prevented the fifth Olympic ring from lighting up.

Instead, Putin saw spliced-in rehearsal footage showing all five Olympic rings lighting up properly - imagery similar to, if not the same as, that seen by the rest of the Russian public on television.

The photos were taken Friday night by the AP's David Goldman, who was acting as the pool photographer for international news agencies and working in the presidential lounge where leaders had gathered in the runup to the ceremony.

In a sequence of photos shot by Goldman over several seconds, Putin, waiting to be introduced at the ceremony, is seen turned away from the only two monitors in the lounge and facing a wall of blacked-out windows and a single open door facing the stadium. He is looking down. Behind him and to the left, a big-screen TV shows four of five rings lighting up before it cuts briefly to black, then to a shot of performers.

After a few seconds, an image of all five rings illuminating properly then appears on the TV screen. Putin turns toward the monitor, faces it and looks up, seeing the footage of all five rings.

Moments later, he leaves the suite to face the crowd at Fisht Olympic Stadium.

The rings glitch was shown live on internal Olympic channels when it happened, but the Russian public instead saw spliced footage from one of two rehearsals, held Feb. 1 and 4. In that spliced footage, the Olympic rings lighted up just as planned during a moment that is always pivotal in opening ceremonies.

The image of the unilluminated ring drew scrutiny around the world and produced pointed comments on social media, where many had been questioning whether Russia was truly prepared to host the Olympic Games.

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larry February 09 2014 at 12:53 PM

The Sochi, opening ceremonies "glitch" is getting more attention and "air-time" than the deaths of 4 Americans in Benghazi. What's wrong with this picture ????

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1 reply
believeudo larry February 09 2014 at 1:15 PM

You know!

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yamadogs February 09 2014 at 12:40 PM

I think the Russian people have gone to great effort and expense to put on this program. A technical problem should be overlooked. The focus should be on the Olympians and their achievements. The opening ceremonies were amazing.

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maqita February 09 2014 at 12:39 PM

Are we being too picky, and would that have been a big thing elsewhere?

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1 reply
bbnpl4545 maqita February 09 2014 at 12:45 PM

Only in America. The media would have pushed untill they had a story like. The pyro tech. was fired.

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Ed February 09 2014 at 12:33 PM

The country that the U.S. news media is making look bad by endlessly harping on every little glitch at Sochi is ours. It's nice seeing from these posts that most of us aren't the peevish children that our media make Americans appear out to be.
I wouldn't be at all surprised to learn that a lot of the guys who are crowing about this would have preferred an event far worse than a glitch at the opening ceremonies if they could use that event to make Russia look bad.

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Richard February 09 2014 at 12:30 PM

It sounds to me that our press is trying everything that can do to make the Russians look like a bunch of screw ups. Like nothing ever goes wrong here. The more crap like this I see the less interested I am in the whole mess. Instead of the games, our press has made it a political circus. Maybe they should stay in the crappy hotels with nasty water. They're too uses to being coddled like spoiled brats from some rich family. Get used to the real world and the way a lot of us feel about you.

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2 replies
sonny Richard February 09 2014 at 12:39 PM

Why blame the press? Is this not a Post article.

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jpclarksville Richard February 09 2014 at 12:41 PM

Wouldn't it be great if the US media would focus on the important things like the many, many scandals with this administration? The media is supposed to be the "fourth branch" of government by reporting what is going on. Instead, they take their talking points directly from the white house and do their very best to cover up what is going on.

Can you say Pravda? The media must be right at home in Russia.

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JetfireJK February 09 2014 at 12:29 PM

In order to succeed someone must fail? I think the Olympics is beautiful and appreciate the trouble that Mr. Putin and the Russian people have gone to ...in order to give us the best!

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heritmail February 09 2014 at 12:28 PM

The powers to be are probably as corrupt in the USA as they are in Russia-what else is new? It is difficult for some people in the News Media to keep politics out of the Olympics because such an issue will sell airtime. On the other hand, Countries (political entities) are competing with one another, so it is easy to inject political agendas. Let's keep it as sportsman/woman like as possible. Go USA!

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Ben Callis February 09 2014 at 12:26 PM

So much BS about the glitch during the opening ceremonies. People nowadays complain about too much; and they couldn't do as well.

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dan_crabtree February 09 2014 at 12:26 PM

And this from an america that now is so divided and drowning in debt and divisiveness that it defies discription.."one stupid ring"....please.!!...look, pack the protestors and nbc staff off to siberia and get on with this great show.

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lynn February 09 2014 at 12:25 PM

Do any of us Americans every try to find the good in anything? I think the opening ceremonies were
awesome!!!!!!!!!! One small glitch...big deal when everything else was spectacular!

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