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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    You'd be surprised how many people don't even know her name.
    I wouldn't. I very much doubt that anyone I know IRL knows who Michelle Kwan is. But perhaps that's because I'm a European.
    I hear outside a million panicking birds, and know even out there comfort is done with; it has shattered even the stars, this creature at last come home to me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by orientalplane View Post
    I wouldn't. I very much doubt that anyone I know IRL knows who Michelle Kwan is.
    This. Or if they do, more often than not they'll say "that Asian girl".

    Now, everybody knows who Katarina Witt is which is pretty amazing for a country with no real history of figure skating in the media whatsoever.
    To think that fun is simple fun, while earnest things are earnest, proves all too plain that neither one thou truthfully discernest.

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    Quote Originally Posted by allezfred View Post
    This. Or if they do, more often than not they'll say "that Asian girl".
    Most of the people I know think she won in SLC.
    My job requires me to be a juggler, but that does not mean that I enjoy working with clowns.

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    I think it's somewhat bizarre that Michelle Kwan has had so much experience with public speaking and higher education, and yet *still* mixes pronouns within the same sentence. If I were the writer of the article, I would have gone ahead and corrected those.

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    Michelle Kwan is really an outsanding personality. One can't do nothing else but admire her for her accomplishments and attitudes.

    I'm also a bit disapointed when I read that many people don't know who she is. She is multiple times US national champion, World champion and olympian, this is something that must be recognized. What do people know really ? Do they have a wider culture than just medias buzz ?
    I mean at least they could recognize the name even if they can't list all her athletics accomplishments, the name, at least ! But no...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nomad View Post
    Most of the people I know think she won in SLC.
    A Jeopardy contestant even thought she won in Nagano.

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    Quote Originally Posted by museksk8r View Post
    A Jeopardy contestant even thought she won in Nagano.
    A Jeopardy contestent once had a clue about a "skater born in 1980", and answered "Katerina Witt". Somehow, I think that Jeopardy contestents are not always all that knowledgeable about figure skaters.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Quintuple View Post
    I think it's somewhat bizarre that Michelle Kwan has had so much experience with public speaking and higher education, and yet *still* mixes pronouns within the same sentence. If I were the writer of the article, I would have gone ahead and corrected those.
    I find that I make those mistakes all the time when I'm just speaking or writing on this forum. When I write my real papers, I do a much better job keeping those things in check. My biggest problem in casual speech is saying "their" or "they" when I refer to an individual or mixing up past and present tense. Those are usually the first things I check when I edit.

    I find most people tend to do that in a casual, conversational setting. Your brain works differently when it comes to the written word, especially in an academic environment, I find.
    "Corporation, n. An ingenious device for obtaining individual profit without individual responsibility." - Ambrose Bierce

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    You'd be surprised how many people don't even know her name. I am shocked every time I have to explain to someone about Michelle Kwan.
    It doesn't surprise me. Figure skating just isn't that big of a deal in the USA. People who don't follow the sport know who Nancy Kerrigan, Tonya Harding, Kristi Yamaguchi, Brian Boitano, Oksana Baiul, and Katarina Witt are, but that's about it. They, excluding Harding, were all over the tv in primetime coverage during skating's post-Kerrigan-assault boom when all of those professional competitions and shows saturated the basic networks that everyone has access to. That coverage started to slowly dwindle after Nagano and was nonexistent after Salt Lake City. Generally, not as many people were following Olympic eligible skating it seems. 1994-1999 was pro skating's primetime heyday . . . it was great while it lasted!

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    Speaking of people thinking that Kwan won the OGM, this news anchor seems to think she was a two-time Olympic Gold Medalist during this interview.

    http://gall.dcinside.com/list.php?id...39&page=1&bbs=

    Kwan gave an awkward look to the camera but she didn't correct him.
    "Corporation, n. An ingenious device for obtaining individual profit without individual responsibility." - Ambrose Bierce

  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by VIETgrlTerifa View Post
    I find that I make those mistakes all the time when I'm just speaking or writing on this forum. When I write my real papers, I do a much better job keeping those things in check. My biggest problem in casual speech is saying "their" or "they" when I refer to an individual or mixing up past and present tense. Those are usually the first things I check when I edit.

    I find most people tend to do that in a casual, conversational setting. Your brain works differently when it comes to the written word, especially in an academic environment, I find.
    Same here. I find that I often get tongue-tied when I'm speaking to strangers, especially if I'm talking fast. My words often trip over themselves, and then later on I think, darn it, only if they knew how I could really talk!

    I never had that problem with term papers, though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by VIETgrlTerifa View Post
    I find that I make those mistakes all the time when I'm just speaking or writing on this forum. When I write my real papers, I do a much better job keeping those things in check. My biggest problem in casual speech is saying "their" or "they" when I refer to an individual or mixing up past and present tense. Those are usually the first things I check when I edit.

    I find most people tend to do that in a casual, conversational setting. Your brain works differently when it comes to the written word, especially in an academic environment, I find.
    Very true!

  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artifice View Post
    What do people know really ? Do they have a wider culture than just medias buzz ?
    I mean at least they could recognize the name even if they can't list all her athletics accomplishments, the name, at least ! But no...
    Do you know the names of many Olympic medallists in sports you don't follow? I'm sure most people don't, and not knowing them is hardly indicative of being uncultured.

    Ice skating isn't a huge sport here in the UK. People here who aren't skating fans usually know only of Curry, Cousins, Torvill and Dean, and as allezfred rightly mentioned, Katarina Witt.
    I hear outside a million panicking birds, and know even out there comfort is done with; it has shattered even the stars, this creature at last come home to me.

  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by orientalplane View Post
    Do you know the names of many Olympic medallists in sports you don't follow? I'm sure most people don't, and not knowing them is hardly indicative of being uncultured.
    Good point!

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    Quote Originally Posted by allezfred View Post
    This. Or if they do, more often than not they'll say "that Asian girl".

    Now, everybody knows who Katarina Witt is which is pretty amazing for a country with no real history of figure skating in the media whatsoever.
    katarina witt is not more known than michelle in the US. unless you were talking about europe which I have no clue about.

    the fact that many might not know her is due to the fact that, as already noted, skating is so dead in the US and besides her "time" was over ages ago.

    polls have consistently shown that michelle is america's favorite female skater and even in 2009 she still made the list of top 10 favorite female athletes despite not competing since 2005...but then again how many female athletes can the general american public name outside a handful

    Quote Originally Posted by museksk8r View Post
    It doesn't surprise me. Figure skating just isn't that big of a deal in the USA. People who don't follow the sport know who Nancy Kerrigan, Tonya Harding, Kristi Yamaguchi, Brian Boitano, Oksana Baiul, and Katarina Witt are, but that's about it.
    if a random american who doesn't follow the sport can't even recall who michelle kwan is I doubt they'd even be able to list most of the names on your list except maybe tonya and nancy for the whack. michelle was very much a part of that skating boom in the US you're talking about, if not the ultimate queen of that era. and I'm talking about publicity and media not just medals.
    Last edited by iarispiralllyof; 09-10-2010 at 12:57 AM.

  16. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    You'd be surprised how many people don't even know her name. I am shocked every time I have to explain to someone about Michelle Kwan.
    Well, anyone who reads this board knows how often the name "Michelle Kwan" must come up in your conversations.

    It's funny because one of my freshmen boys mentioned her name in a class discussion a couple of days ago and most of the other students knew that she was an "Olympic skater who won a medal".

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    I would also agree that more people in the US would name Katarina , Tonya, and Nancy as figure skaters they have heard of before they named Michelle. I would also add Brian Boitano to that list. Anyone who was relevent in pop culture. (Playboy, the "wack", What Would Brian Boytano Do, etc...)

    I would have to think though, that her name would at least sound familiar even if they do not know who she is?

    Anyways-That is a great article! I am very proud to be a fan.

  18. #38

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    Sad to say, among the general public, Tonya Harding is a more recognizable name than Michelle Kwan. And while to someone who follows figure skating, especially someone in the U.S., it may seem surprising that Michelle's classmates might not know who she was, I don't think it is that unexpected when you consider the demographics of the Fletcher School at Tufts. They have students from many countries, including those where figure skating is likely not very well covered -- if at all (Uganda, Palestine, Morocco, Costa Rica). In the 2008-09 student body, more than 40% were non-US citizens, with 57 nationalities represented among the 250 students.

  19. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by UGG View Post
    I would also agree that more people in the US would name Katarina , Tonya, and Nancy as figure skaters they have heard of before they named Michelle. I would also add Brian Boitano to that list. Anyone who was relevent in pop culture. (Playboy, the "wack", What Would Brian Boytano Do, etc...)
    Michelle Kwan and Serena Williams were the only female athletes to ever appear on the yearly overall most popular athletes list (male and female) back in 2002. No other females have cracked the overall list before or since. The year Katarina did Playboy, she didn't even appear on the top 10 list for just female athletes, Michelle did. I'm sorry but anyone who thinks Katarina, a German, is more popular in the US than Michelle, an American who was the main story in the US for 3 Winter Olympic cycles is dreaming

    LOL you're referencing South Park? Most South Park fans had to google Brian Boitano to even understand the root of that gag, as you'll find when you see many of the comments on his videos. I'm not sure that being known as part of a gag and having people shocked to find out you're a real person counts for much. Nor is South Park even that influential/popular. What's more is male skaters receive not even a fraction of the attention, endorsements that female skaters do nor are they as embraced by the public.

    I don't want to sound like a broken record, but contrary to what people think about Americans only tuning in to watch skating during the Olympics - during the 90's even the National championships had great ratings, in particular the legendary 1998 nationals between Michelle and Tara which drew over 13 million viewers in the US. Every athlete is going to have their time to shine and then they're going to decline in notoriety, especially in such a niche sport that most Americans don't actually partake in, unlike basketball or football.
    Last edited by iarispiralllyof; 09-10-2010 at 12:57 AM.

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    I don't think most americans would know who Michelle Kwan is, but I think she is more known than Katerina Witt. I think Sasha Cohen is probably more known than Witt. I don't really consider Playboy "pop culture" -as most people don't follow it- and I don't know anything Witt has done outside of skating that would make Americans still remember her.

    I think for the general public, Tonya Harding and probably Nancy Kerrigan would be the top names, followed by Brian Boitano, in the younger generations only due to South Park. (I've seen comments on youtube videos that were "dude - that's a real guy? I thought the song made him up!)

    Maybe I have a bit of an age bias though as the first Olympics I REALLY remember were 1992, so the skaters before then I only know as pros.

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