The Fluidity of Soft Power in YouTube’s Broadcasting of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games

Andrew White, Thomas Whyke*, Joaquin Lopez Mugica, Levi Dean

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Abstract

In an era of heightened geopolitical tension, marked by the dynamic power shift between the West and China, the 2022 Winter Olympic Games emerged as a focal point of diplomatic contention. Several Western nations signaled their dissent through diplomatic boycotts, while China, on the other hand, seized this platform to strategize its soft power This paper, therefore, explores how the Chinese government utilized the 2022 Winter Olympic Games opening ceremony as a canvas for the portrayal of its national image, and how this portrayal resonated with the global audience. The opening ceremony provided China an unrivaled opportunity to express its cultural identity, political ideology, and aspirations to an international audience. Hence, this research delves into the intangible facets of media and image perception, with a specific focus on the role of YouTube as a reservoir for live streams from traditional broadcaster, Eurosport. It is of vital importance to understand that this depiction of national image and its perception by a global audience are not static, but fluid concepts, constantly molded by the socio-political context. This paper, therefore, contributes to a nuanced comprehension of the fluidity inherent in the construction and projection of China's soft power, shedding light on the intricate choreography of international diplomacy, media strategy, and national branding.
Original languageEnglish
JournalGlobal Media and Communication
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 28 Feb 2024

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