You know the Olympics are off to a rough start when the novelty Twitter account @SochiProblems has almost double the followers than the official Olympics account. It all began with a simple tweet from a Chicago Tribune journalist that showed the yellowish-brown water coming out of the sinks in Sochi. Now reports are flooding in all over social media and blogs about the poor travel, environmental, and sanitary conditions in the Winter Olympics host city, among the more serious concerns of Sochi killing off stray dogs, and protests against Russia’s new anti-gay law.
According to the Chicago Tribune, their reporter was told to not even wash her face with the tap water coming out of her sink. According to Water World and several travel blogs, as much of 60 percent of Russian tap water is undrinkable, and tourists are urged to never drink the water to be safe. The Russian Water Association did not respond to calls for comment.
— Stacy St. Clair (@StacyStClair) February 4, 2014
The list of other Sochi problems ranges from the mundane — complaints about hotel accommodations and elevator problems — to the hilarious — reporters and visitors taking screenshots of menu mistranslations where the letters “ortment” were accidentally left off of the word “assortment.” Many of the complaints, like the clean water concerns, unfinished construction in Olympic Park, and reports of bees being found in food, have left people wondering if Sochi was the right choice for the Olympics.
— Sochi Problems (@sochiprobIems) February 7, 2014
Another unusual Sochi Olympic “preparation” that has caused outrage is the apparent city official orders to kill off stray dogs, in order to protect visitors.There has been a last-minute attempt to save these animals, and the hashtag #SaveSochiStrays is trending on Twitter with visitors and athletes befriending and feeding the dogs.
Of course amongst the smirking complaints and humorous hashtags, are the more serious and darker concerns of the 2014 Olympics like the new allegedly anti-gay laws in Russia, which, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak said, criminalizes discussion of gay rights in the presence of minors, according to the LA Times.President Obama, and many other world leaders in response, will not be attending the opening ceremonies in protest. Today’s rainbow Olympian Google Doodle (PIC) demonstrates Google’s solidarity with other global leaders.
Perhaps to neatly tie up the confusion, chaos and outrage during this year’s Olympics is this trending tweet:
— Lindsey Rae (@lindsrae27) February 7, 2014