Change.org, a website that hosts public petitions, crashed Friday morning after a flood of users signed a petition to investigate a controversial Olympic figure skating result.
Russia’s Adelina Sotnikova won the gold medal in an upset over South Korea’s Yuna Kim.
After the event, a Change.org petition called “Open Investigation into Judging Decisions of Women’s Figure Skating and Demand Rejudgement at the Sochi Olympics” was started by a user named “Justice Seeker.”
It went viral in a way the website had never seen before.
“The petition gained 700,000-plus signatures in just six hours and is sending traffic to our site at five times the highest previously-recorded rate,” a spokesperson told the AFP.
The petition is up to 1.5 million signatures as of 6:30 a.m. eastern on Friday. The spokesperson told AFP that 90% of the traffic was from South Korea — where Kim is the country’s most famous athlete.
Sotnikova had a more difficult routine and she nailed every jump, which gave her a better technical score than Kim by about five points.
The error message after the site crashed (via NBC Olympics):
Below is the full text of the petition.
It ends, “This is NOT for Yuna Kim, this is for the FAIR SPORTSMANSHIP THAT IS SUPPOSED TO BE CENTRAL TO THE WORLD EVENT OF THE OLYMPICS.”
Open Investigation into Judging Decisions of Women’s Figure Skating and Demand Rejudgement at the Sochi Olympics
The following public figures’ twit will give you a good gist of what happened:
Katarina Witt (German Figure Skater) “Shame Gold Medal, Yuna Kim is a real queen”
Bill Plaschke (American Sports Journalist) “Kim didn’t win…unbelievable…scandal written all over this…Russian Sotnikova wins, fans going crazy, Kim disappears, wrong, wrong”
Alex Goldberger (Olympics Researcher at NBC) “Adelina Sotnikova was excellent tonight, but Yuna Kim was robbed”
Terra Findlay (Canadian ice dancer) “I’m speechless. Yuna Kim, you are a queen”
NBC Olympics (Official Twitter) “Yuna Kim wins Silver. 17 year old Sotnikova wins Gold, and Kostner wins bronze. Do you agree with the results?”
ESPN Official Website News Article titled “Home Cooking”, “Home-Ice Advantage”
CBC Commentary: “That’s a shock…Did you see that coming” (of Sotnikova winning) “Well I think I saw a medal coming, I’m just not sure we thought it was going to be that one” “As caught up in the moment as I was… I’m still stuck on quality of skating that Yuna Kim has, and the moments where you see jarring images during Sotnikova that she’s not ready yet …The judges have their job and I really look forward to looking at it again so I can see it with fresh eyes but yes I am sitting here a little stunned”
New York Times: “Comparing the Jumps of Sotnikova and Yu-na” included rating of Sotnikova’s Triple Flip and Double axel as “Poor” in the free program and Yu-na’s ratings consisted of Good only.
As you can probably tell, the world was keeping an eye on Yuna Kim who has set a World Record for the history of Women’s Figure Skating, to defend her gold medalist title this Sochi Olympic 2014. The free skating event took place this morning and nobody denies the fact the Sotnikova did present to her potential. She did an amazing job and showed amazing performance. The one mistake she made was the stumbling after one of her jumps which was – although small – quite visible even to the public who do not know professional knowledge of figure skating. Nevertheless, she achieved her best score of 149.95 which was 0.11 away from Yu-na Kim’s world record of 150.06 at the Vancouver Olympics. This comparison illustrates the home advantage already although I do admit that rules have changed since then but we are talking of quality of programme here.
Next up was Yuna Kim, she skated and her performance can be shown through what the CBC commenters said “this woman has no equal”. She did show tiny unstable landing in one of her jumps, but relative to the stumble shown by Sotnikova, it was not as visible and she carried on with superb acting performance. “If you were to write a textbook, that would be how to do it”, “Nobody compares to the flow she takes as she jumps and on the landings, nobody” (CBC)
Even the night before in the short programme, an evaluation sheet from the judges were made public which showed 0 in one of Yuna’s jumps – in the short program where she made no mistakes at all which already shocked the Korean people. As well as the fact that they put 4 Russian people as judges out of the 14, makes all the sense. But the score in the free program has added on to the unfairness of what’s supposed to be the fairest of all competitions – the Olympics. The corruption needs to be made visible and needs to be corrected.
The above quotes are chosen because they are stated by well-known figures, however, the rest of the public is demanding justice. But of course, we, as just citizens, know that our voice is weak and we may not have a chance to change anything. But this is crucial. And this petition may help towards bringing fairness back into the Olympics that showed so much corruption ironically. Yuna does not care about the medal since Gold was not in her utmost desires but it is the unfairness being observed by EVERYONE in the world except Russia. They need to acknowledge that yes, Sotnikova wrote the history in Russia but HISTORY IS FULL OF BIAS THAT NEEDS TO BE CORRECTED. This is NOT for Yuna Kim, this is for the FAIR SPORTSMANSHIP THAT IS SUPPOSED TO BE CENTRAL TO THE WORLD EVENT OF THE OLYMPICS.
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