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Bell: “I’m an Olympics Geek, What Can I Tell You?”

nbcchinalogo_8-4.JPGThe Los Angeles Times’ Matea Gold takes a look at the upcoming Today show coverage of the Olympics.

Anchor Matt Lauer says the network will cover the good and the bad. “We’re going to cover every single aspect of it,” he said. “And I don’t think we’re going to be shy about it. The interesting thing will be what kind, if any, pushback we get.”

Today EP Jim Bell, who describes himself as “an Olympics geek,” (he’s helped to cover six Olympics) is excited to get started. “”I’m really pumped up about it,” he said. “I think the fact that it’s China is going to make it interesting, whether we want it to be or not. And we want it to be.”

Related: Click continued for an update on China access restrictions…

Marisa Guthrie describes in Broadcasting & Cable the difficulties for non-rights holders (anyone except NBC) to get access. “The bureaucratic red tape in China makes covering news beyond the competition inside the Olympic Green — which is off limits to non-rights holders — all the more difficult,” she writes.

Still, ABC News foreign editor Michael Kreisel says the restrictions are not necessarily exclusive to China. “The Olympics have always been restrictive for non-rights holders,” he said. “We are totally used to this.”

And FishbowlNY’s Glynnis MacNicol reports The Huffington Post, “remains off limits to Internet users in China.”

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