French Newspaper Accuses LA2024 Of Buying Facebook Likes, LA Denies

  0 VolleyMob Contributors | April 06th, 2017 | News

Courtesy and written by Reid Carlson

LA2024 is popular on social media, particularly on Facebook.  And by most standards, Paris 2024 is also pretty popular on social media, but not nearly as popular as LA.  At the time of this writing (5 April 2017), LA2024 boasts an impressive 1,051,665 likes on Facebook, whereas Paris 2024 has 236,630.  So does that mean LA is just much more popular than Paris in the bid to host the 2024 Summer Olympic Games?  Well, not according to French newspaper Le Figaro.

On Monday LA2024 cheerfully announced it had surpassed 1 million likes, only to have the large majority of those likes called into question by French newspaper Le Figaro.  LA2024’s page, which has gained more than 800,000 likes over the past three months alone, attributes its success to an in-house social media team which has driven the productive campaign and attracted fans from around the globe.  Additionally, LA2024 claims its bid and the city of Los Angeles is simply very captivating to young people–the primary audience of social media–and that the team promoting LA2024 has leveraged LA’s cultural and industrial strengths to draw in its audience.  Le Figaro, however, remains skeptical.

According to digital experts at Le Figaro, the majority of the likes LA2024 has gained over the past three months have come from the Middle East and Africa.  Likes from Bangladesh increased from 83 in January to 104,165 in April, and likes in Pakistan skyrocketed to 92,104 from in April, despite only boasting 56 in January.  Additionally, likes in Nepal rose from 71 in January to 78,515 over the same three-month period.  LA2024 also gained approximately 27,000 followers on Twitter in March of 2017 alone.  However, engagement on Twitter and Facebook did not swell as dramatically as the number of likes might indicate that it would.

Of all the likes and follows on Facebook, 79 percent of LA2024’s fan base are under the age of 34.  LA2024 claims it has attracted a younger demographic so successfully due to the creative and high-tech bid it has put forth, alongside its efforts to engage with young people from around the globe.

Paris 2024 has stepped up its game to engage the people of France with a new app that released on Monday, the same day LA2024 celebrated cracking the 1-million-likes barrier.  The app called “Objectif Paris 2024” works with the health tracking tools on users’ smartphones  to measure their activity, challenging them to accomplish fitness goals such as running 5 kilometers, in order to unlock new levels.  Paris 2024 co-chairman Tony Estanguet said of the app: “Paris 2024 is a passion project bringing together the French people behind the idea that sport must sit at the heart of society,” and that “[t]he Objectif Paris 2024 app is a perfect illustration of this.”

Los Angeles and Paris will continue bidding on the 2024 Games until September 13th when the IOC will formally make its decision and award the Games to one of the two cities.

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