How All the Photos From Sochi Reach You in Just 3 Minutes

How All the Photos From Sochi Reach You in Just 3 Minutes


Sochi winter olympics Sochi winter olympics

During events like the Winter Olympics — when information circles the world in split-second tweets — news organizations are desperate for photos to accompany their stories. But for photography institutions such as Getty and the Associated Press, sending those photos thousands of miles to where they need to be presents a challenge. To meet the demand, the companies are investing heavily in new technologies to deliver photos to news outlets as quickly as possible — even from the top of remote mountains. source:

How All the Photos From Sochi Reach You in Just 3 Minutes

But that three-minute window includes a great deal of behind-the-scenes action. The images aren’t just going directly from photographer to the Getty distribution network. First, they are processed by a team of editors and Photoshop experts who select the best photos, crop and color-correct them, and make sure the proper people are listed in the captions. Mainardis said that of the million or so images Getty photographers shoot during the Winter Olympics, about 50,000 make it to its customers.

Bigger spectacle events require even more photo resources. Mainardis said during the opening ceremony, a photography team shot 26,000 images, which were narrowed down to 2,300 to be presented online.

Mainardis added that Getty has been using a fiber-optic cable system since the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. Getty has been the official photography agency of the IOC since the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

Every four years, each Winter Olympics have posed unique challenges, depending on its location — and Sochi is no different, according to Mainardis. He said the most difficult event to cover is alpine skiing.

“Our alpine team needs to ski down the mountain early in the morning, carrying between 20 to 30 kilograms (44 to 66 pounds) of equipment, to get into position to shoot the competition.”

Earlier in the games, photos such as the one above emerged showing drones photographing athletes. Both Getty and the Associated Press said photography organizations are not authorized to use drones, which are reserved for licensed television broadcasters. In the photo, above, a drone captures images of Norway’s Aleksander Aurdal during the men’s ski slopestyle finals on Thursday.


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