Michael Phelps dominated on Facebook during Rio Olympics
Read about the latest sports tech news, innovations, ideas and products that impact players, fans and the sports industry at SportTechie.com.
Michael Phelps’s Olympic reign continued at the 2016 Rio Games as he won another five gold medals and one silver, pushing his total career count to 23 golds and 28 overall.
The 31-year-old Phelps—who is the most decorated Olympian ever—continued his social dominance on Facebook as well.
According to the social media platform, the 277 million people who joined the Olympic conversation (from Aug. 5–21) on Facebook talked about Phelps more than any other athlete. He was followed by Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt, Brazilian soccer star Neymar and American gymnast Simone Biles.
Phelps’s Facebook Live broadcast, where he formally announced his retirement before his final race on Aug. 13, was the most-viewed video by an Olympic athlete during the Rio Games; as of this writing, the broadcast had nearly 4 million views.
The Wall Street Journal reported in mid-June that Phelps was one of 140 video content creators who had partnered with Facebook’s live-streaming service; According to the Journal, Phelps was paid $200,000 for his participation.
Additionally, of the 1.5 billion interactions on Facebook, swimming was the most-discussed Olympic sport. Gymnastics, track, soccer and beach volleyball rounded out the top five. The best-performing non-video post based on interactions was Portuguese soccer superstar Cristiano Ronaldo congratulating Bolt on his three gold medals.