Journalists are flocking to Sochi to begin their coverage of the Olympic Games. As they arrive at their hotels, however, a surprise greets them: for some, their hotels have yet to be finished.
Turning to Twitter, journalists have begun sharing their initial Olympic experiences with the public. As of Feb. 4, only six of the nine media hotels were completed. For the rest, the scene included wandering dogs, lack of heat, broken elevators and water-main breaks. One journalist even tweeted about the lack of a floor in the hotel’s reception area.
All of this comes in sync with a discussion of whether Russia is prepared to host the Games. In the haste to prepare Sochi, construction has caused potentially huge environmental issues—and no one is sure quite how much. Contaminated drinking water, greenhouse-gas emissions and illegal waste dumping have organizations like WorldWatch Institute raising an eyebrow.
Even a Twitter account called @SochiProblems has popped up, sending out frequent tweets featuring pictures of hotel rooms and construction problems. The account has already accumulated over 44,000 followers.
Luckily for our team, an unfinished hotel isn’t in their future. The BSU at the Games group will be staying on a cruise ship—and don’t worry, it floats and everything.
BSU at the Games is a freelance news agency operated by 22 student journalists reporting from the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games through an immersive-learning program at Ball State University.