THE PRESS SERVICES

Within the framework of the general organization for the Games of the XVII Olympiad, the Press Services, forming Section V, were in operation as far back as October 1st 1956. Gradual technical co-ordination, as called for because of the particular functions of Section V, brought about a reinforcement of the initial structure. Thus in the spring of 1960 the Press Services consisted of the following establishment: Once the main problems directly connected with relations with the national and international Press had been outlined, the various duties and responsibilities were assigned in accordance with the directives which are summarised hereunder: compilation and issuing of the " Official Bulletin" and publicity material; preparation of illustrative material (information and photographs) necessary as publicity to be diffused through modern information channels: press, radio, television, and cinema; training of announcers and interpreters;  organisation of the Press Centre and News Centre; technical communications of the Press Services with the internal and international telecommunication networks; organization of information services for the Press in all Olympic venues; official accreditation and assistance to journalists, photographers, radio and TV commentators, cinema and television operators, within the limits prescribed by the Olympic Regulations; assignment of accommodation to accredited journalists; distribution of Olympic Cards and tickets to reserved seats for accredited journalists; organization of a transport service for accredited journalists; reception of accredited journalists; compilation and printing of " Daily Programmes "; organization and control of the Photographic Pool; liaison (as control) with radio & TV organizations; preparation, compilation, and printing of the Official Report.
The Press Service was directed by a Head of Section who took up duty on January 1st 1959 and by a Director of Secretariat appointed at the same time as the Section was formed. Initially, the section was composed of: 1 clerk, 2 typists with a working knowledge of languages, and 3 translators (French and English).
Ever since it came into being, the Section devoted its work to drawing up a plan of co-ordination which, as time went on, followed a natural process of expansion and perfection.
Amongst other things, a considerable correspondance service of information was the starting point of working relations with foreign and Italian newspapers, National Olympic Committees, International Sports Federations, and various sports and tourist organizations. A card index was compiled and communiques giving news on the general organization were distributed.

The official bulletin

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During the first three months of 1957, a special questionnaire was despatched to all foreign and Italian newspapers, compiled in such a way as to get an opinion on the solution of certain problems of a technical journalistic nature and, in particular, on the choice of accommodation for the Press Centre. The communications received from the international Press, duly filed and catalogued, were to prove extremely helpful. The greater part of the answers were unanimous in stating: the excellence of the site chosen; the usefulness of having board and lodging in the same quarters; the usefulness of having a concentration of all the Press services in the same accommodation premises.
Other details obtained in connection with the information service were varied requirements on working possibilities, the use of telephones and teleprinters, the transmission of telephotos, etc.
During this period, the first number of the Official Bulletin was edited and circulated. The Bulletin was produced at varying intervals on the basis of a progressive plan and its object was to provide the Press with all news in connection with the Olympic organization. Measuring 21 X 31 cms, printed in offset in two or more colours, compiled in three languages, it reached a total of 22 numbers with a total circulation of 557,000 copies.
The Bulletin was addressed to the International Olympic Committee, to the International Sports Federations, to Italian Sports Federations, Provincial Committees of the Italian National Olympic Committee, the Presidency of the Italian Republic, the Presidency of the Council of Ministers, the Ministry of Defence, the Rome Municipality, to foreign and Italian newspapers, Italian Embassies abroad, Consulates and Vice-Consulates, Legations,  Tourist organizations, Cultural Institutes, hotel associations, tourist agencies, transport companies, and various other organizations and institutions.
On 11th March 1957, a final decision was made and approved by the responsible bodies of the C.O.N.I. on the choice of premises known as the Domus Pacis and Domus Mariae as quarters for the accommodation of officially accredited journalists. The latter building was also chosen for setting up the Press Centre with all the necessary technical equipment. The choice of the Domus Mariae, situated in a pleasant area along the Via Aurelia, as the Press Centre was made as a result of approval received from the international Press and, more particularly, because of its equidistance from the main sports centres: 6 kms. from the historic centre of the City, 8 kms. from the E.U.R., 7 kms. from the Foro Italico, 9 kms. from the Olympic Village and 27 kms. from Lake Albano.

A committee of experts

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Taking into account the many requirements, the Section considered it indispensable for the detailing of technical responsibilities to set up a select Committee of members, thus achieving greater elasticity than would have been the case with a larger body. This Committee, composed of experts in the field of journalism and acting as consultants, comprised the following: Chairman, Mr. Marcello Garroni, Secretary-General for the Games; Members, Mr. Bruno Roghi, President of the Italian Sports Press Union; Mr. Max Bergerre, President of the Foreign Press Association (substituted in March 1958 by the new President of the Association, Mr. Kurt Klinger); Mr. Giuseppe Galliani Caputo, Department Head and Head of the Press Office of the Rome Municipality (substituted in March 1958 by Mr. Armando Ravaglioli, new Head of the Municipality Press Office); Mr. Renato Lefevre from the Presidency of the Council of Ministers; Mr. Donato Martucci from the Press Office of the C.O.N.I. and Mr. Enrico Mattei from the National Federation of the Italian Press; Secretary, Mr. Romolo Giacomini.
In December 1958, the new President of the Italian Sports Press Union, Mr. Leone Boccali, was called upon to join the Committee whilst the former President of the Union, Mr. Bruno Roghi, was also re-elected.
In its first meeting held on June 21st 1957, the Committee examined two projects: that of the allocation of Olympic cards and that of the production of the Olympic film.
On the following 3rd December 1957, the Committee visited the Domus Mariae premises to ascertain the requirements for the Press Centre.
The problem of ensuring that the Press received news on all the sectors of the organization in the quickest and most complete way created the necessity, in May 1957, of elaborating a plan for a photographic, radio, and television service.
During the second half of 1957, the circulation of reports on the Olympic organization and on the state of work on the venues and training grounds was intensified. During this same period, work was started on the collection of various articles published by the Italian Press and this material, carefully selected, was thereafter catalogued in appropriate booklets.
The same work was done on press cuttings from the foreign Press after a summary had been made for a publication called " Foreign Press Review ".
86 editions of this latter publication were produced.
As already mentioned, ever since the Section was created, a large amount of informative material was circularised. This increased in volume gradually and, during the last year of Olympic preparation, reached very high proportions.
In this respect, it is considered opportune to provide statistics on the illustrative and informative material which was circularised during the four years of preparatory work.
By means of this method of periodical circularisation, it was possible keep the public up-to-date, giving information on the state of work on the sports venues, the competition programme of the Games, the functioning of the Press Centre and the progressive working out of the many and various problems in connection with the general organization. Although the instruments of propaganda used proved reasonably efficient, a method of circulation of general news through Information Agencies was at the same time set in motion.
Amongst the various types of publicity, the Section also collaborated directly with the National Tourist Board (E.N.I.T.) in producing the publication called " Olympiad 1960 ". This publication, produced with the help of other organizations in the city as interested parties, was originally printed in two languages, French and English, but was later produced in Italian, German, and Spanish. Thousands of copies were circulated in accordance with the E.N.I.T.'s publicity campaign.

The diffusion of the poster

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The Executive Committee of the Games, after approving the draft for the proposed official poster, arranged for the printing of 290,000 copies, that is, 30,000 in French, 55,000 in English, 83,000 in Italian, 12,000 in Arabic, 15,000 in Japanese, 7,000 in Greek, 10,000 in Urdu, 13,000 in Portuguese, 13,000 in Russian, 30,000 in Spanish, and 22,000 in German.
Plans for distribution required detailed study in order to establish the quantities considered to be sufficient for the needs of each country interested in the Rome Olympic Games, and to decide the subdivision in language groups of these quantities, since, as shown above, they were issued in eleven different languages.
The question of quantities, of the subdivision into languages, and distribution was the direct responsibility of the Press Services Section, whilst the despatch of material was attended to by Messrs. Gondrand Brothers, the official forwarding agents.
The poster was sent to the National Olympic Committees for sending in their headquarters and for distribution to the local sports societies that had submitted requests it. The same criterion was adopted for material despatched to the International Sports Federations, to officially accredited tourist agencies, to the Italian delegations abroad (by arrangement with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs), to Italian Cultural Institutes, and to Chambers of Commerce abroad, etc. The requirements of the various foreign countries amounted to a total of 120,499 copies, as shown in Table No. 3.
Distribution of the poster in Italy took place in two stages, that is, a first distribution of 60,000 copies was undertaken during the month of April 1960.
A further distribution of 103,609 copies took place in the period July-August, at which time posters were set up along the route followed by the Olympic Torch and in the cities where the eliminating rounds of the Football Tournament took place: Florence, Grosseto, Livorno, Pescara, L'Aquila, and Naples.
The distribution of the poster in Rome alone involved a large number.
In order to permit in a greater number of cases the display of 11 copies of the poster side-by-side, that is, of the entire series in the 11 languages in which it was issued, it was decided to make use of special boardings. A series of new boardings was prepared along the Olympic Road, along which it was thought the bulk of the Olympic traffic would pass, thus presenting an impressive display of publicity.
In the historic centre of Rome, the poster was placed in special publicity frames set on metallic pedestals.

Course for announcers

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In January 1958, in accordance with the general plan for expansion, the Section increased its personnel by employing interpreters and translators, some of whom spoke several languages, as well as experts in the field of public relations.
During the month of May 1958, a course was organized for student announcers and a first contingent of 50 young people were selected from 1,387 applicants coming from high schools. The students were given special courses which enabled them to improve their knowledge of one or more languages.
Following a scheme which took into account further recruitment, further applicants were examined and selected and a second nucleus of announcers was thus formed. This led to the formation of two groups, one composed of 92 announcers in the English language and the other of 49 in French.
As a result of proposals made by the instructors, it was decided only to make use of those announcers considered most versatile and suitable. These, once a selection had been made, were given an intensive course of lessons and were used during the Games for all announcement purposes, thus undoubtedly facilitating the giving out of immediate information.
In July 1958, the Section worked out a plan for submission to the I.O.C.
for negotiating the televising of the Games with Television Companies on a commercial basis. On the basis of this plan, the I.O.C. subsequently condensed and fixed the ruling contained in the new article No. 49 of the Olympic Regulations, which governs the right of information and relationship with Television Companies constituted on a commercial basis.

Olympic press cards

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The allocation of the Olympic Press Cards was certainly a hard and, to some extent, an ungrateful task which necessarily became subject to strong opposition and criticism. And yet the study took into account the precedents of previous Games in Berlin, London, and Helsinki. In fact, on the occasion of the Games celebrated in those cities, the Press Cards were, in principle, allocated on the basis of 10 % on the number of athletes participating from each country. However, this quota was always increased once the circulation of the applicant newspaper and the amount of space dedicated to sport had been ascertained. But it must not be forgotten that at that time there were practically no limitations on the allocation of Olympic Press Cards. It was only at the I.O.C. Congress in Athens in 1954 on the occasion of the 49th Session that the I.O.C. established and laid down (Art. 48 of the Olympic Regulations) a maximum number of 1000 cards for journalists to be officially accredited.
Consequently, in conformity with this restriction the allocation of Olympic Press Cards for the Rome Olympiad turned out to be the " punctum dolens " of the Press Services Section owing to the very high number of requests received for accreditation. However, the criterion adopted in past Olympiads proved a useful guide. On the other hand, the procedure for the allocation of cards necessitated continual changes and re-consideration and it was on this account that the allocation procedure appeared different to that in the past.
Given the limitations imposed by Art. 48 on the one hand and the exceptional number of requests on the other, the problem of allocation became ever more complicated and, notwithstanding the desire to satisfy all the requests made by the international Press, this was not possible owing to the necessity of abiding by these limitations. As a consequence, the allocations were necessarily in excess of the number of 1,000 in spite of continuous and sometimes regrettable changes to the quotas established in proportion to the requests received. Insofar as the Italian Press was concerned, consideration was given to a strict Union ruling whereby it is laid down that only professional journalists can act as " special correspondents ".
Without wishing to overstress the fact, one cannot but repeat that the Section was faced with exorbitant requests and the solution of these constituted a very delicate and heartfelt problem. However, it was possible to satisfy requests within reasonable limits and, although the limit laid down under Art. 48 was surpassed, it was by the bare minimum necessary to guarantee the complete satisfaction of the authentic requirements of the international Press. It should furthermore be borne in mind that accredited journalists received, in addition to the Press Card, 5,889 special tickets allowing entry into certain venues where space was subject to limitations.

Solutions to the benefit of the press

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January 1959 saw the Section engaged in the conducting and coordination of a number of other matters worked out in collaboration with the Sections most directly interested. This was the case as regards the realization of the leaflet on the competition programme containing information on the location of the Stadia and their relative distances from the centre of Rome, the drafting of the project for the means of transport planned for the Press Centre, as well as for the recruitment and use of guide-interpreters in the various sectors of the Section.
It was again particularly necessary to work in close collaboration with the Technical Section. Here, it was necessary to keep in constant touch for that which necessitated revision and translation into French and English of all the texts of the sports regulations, followed by the responsibility of putting the various texts into format, supervising printing and arranging distribution to interested parties.
Insofar as postal arrangements proper were concerned (which also included installations for use by the public), it was proposed that the framework of the " special " Post and Telegraph network be subdivided into two categories, the first of direct interest to the Press Service, which involved installations reserved for accredited journalists, whilst in the second category, it was proposed to make use of mobile units placed at the disposal of the public but located near the Press sectors in such a way as to be also at the journalists' disposal.
In May 1959 the arrangements made for the photographic " pool " could already have been considered as operating by virtue of a plan which had been redrafted many times. This plan was submitted for the final approval of the Executive Committee but it was not until later, after the active participation of the representatives of the best known photographic Agencies in the world (those in fact comprised in the Pool) that the plan, which had undergone minor modifications, was considered as corresponding faithfully to the various requirements of these Agencies and the journalists directly interested in the transmission of telephotos abroad.

The operations for accreditation

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At this same time, the drafting and printing of the various questionnaires and the setting up of relevant card-indexes in connection with the work of accreditation was undertaken. A solution to this further problem was found immediately after an initial allocation of the Olympic Press Cards had taken place, the work in connection with which implied a firm valuation. Only in September 1959 was it possible to begin the despatch of the questionnaires themselves to the Newspapers, Press Agencies, Radio and TV Companies.
In the second half of 1959, the Section willingly lent its cooperation to the " Olympia Sports Editions " for the production of the " Special Souvenir commemorating the Games of the XVII Olympiad " and to other bodies which produced various publications on Olympic sports and touristic propaganda in collaboration with the Organizing Committee of the Games.
It became necessary to increase the personnel in line with the considerable increase in work. Thus the Section gradually made provision for  the employment of fresh staff having sports experience and possessing a knowledge of two or more foreign languages. In this way roles were more or less filled, but the structure, however, was only completed during the period of the Games.
From January 1960, just eight months away from the celebration of the Games, the Section was engaged in a feverish activity which demanded absolute determination. The introduction of improvements in certain sectors of the organization was also necessary, all this being in consideration of the appropriateness and expediency as pointed out by requests, advice, and suggestions received from the International Press. It must be remembered that not all suggestions proposed were in fact put into effect; not all the problems were of equal importance and responsibility and indeed certain suggestions were often debated and, on occasion, an alternative was selected.
The solution of these and other minor problems was always examined in conjunction with the interests of Press representatives and with the aim of creating better working conditions. On the other hand, all services for the Press were awaited by those who were to take advantage of them and thus the main worry was to do everything possible to satisfy every minimum requirement.
Bearing these aims in mind, an examination was made in the first four months of 1960 of the questions regarding the functioning of the Press Centre, special attention being paid to the easy locating of all the working equipment. A select group of Press Attaches was finally chosen for duty in the various stadia; seats in the stadia assigned to journalists were distributed; places intended to accommodate the Press Agencies were prepared; and, in short, considerable hard work was devoted to the final setting up of the daily programmes.
It may be stated that by July of 1960 all sectors of the Section could be considered entirely efficient: the work of assignment of the Olympic Press Cards was completed, the lodging for accredited journalists settled, and the functioning of the various sectors checked and rechecked. There only remained outstanding eventual modifications and the problem of transport which had already been taken in hand. The running-in of the services was pronounced satisfactory to assure to all accredited journalists the possibility of rapid and complete work.
On 25th July the Section was transferred to the Domus Mariae and in this headquarters all the technical equipment in connection with the functioning of the Press Centre and the News Centre was installed. All the necessary material had previously been found and gradually installed in the offices. This was a huge task involving a specially careful checking of the whole so as to guarantee that the vital needs of the International Press would be satisfied and a rapid service to all accredited journalists assured.
The organization of the News Centre was based on the idea of the advisability of supplying the journalists, in whatever competition venue they were placed, with the immediate results of the competitions carried out contemporaneously in all other venues.
Two distinct communication networks by teleprinter were installed in the Domus Mariae: the first, " Network A", directly linked the News Centre with each individual sports venue; the second, " Network B ", simultaneously linked the News Centre with all the other venues in which events were taking place, the Press Agencies, the newspaper editing offices, the headquarters of the organization, and the Olympic Village, for the immediate retransmission of the results and of news arriving at the News Centre by means of the first network.
In addition, a third circular-type network, " Network C ", was set up, linking the News Centre with the main venues (Olympic Stadium, Swimming Stadium, Palazzo dello Sport), for the distribution of all such news coming from the competition venues as was considered of utmost urgency for the journalists.

The Press Centre and News Centre

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The Press Centre provided for the immediate distribution of all information arriving from the News Centre. The problem of the distribution of such information was somewhat complex on account of the enormous quantity of material and the necessity for a translation of the texts.
The communiques, apart from the " official " communiques compiled in collaboration with the technical Commissions and with the various Juries, reported in chronological order all that happened in the various competition venues; news bulletins were of course numbered, with a consecutive numbering system for each sport, so as to provide the journalists with a quick and convenient reference.
Another basic principle of the organization of this particular sector of the Press Service was that of keeping the quantity of communiques  within reasonable proportions. The journalists were provided with communiques which were placed in their pigeon-holes in the Press Centre and, in addition, in the two sub-centres and on all the competition venues in which events were taking place, chronological communiques were made available to them by means of a "self-service " system; and in each venue in use official communiques regarding results in the venue itself. In this way the journalists engaged in the observation of events were spared the annoyance of finding themselves " snowed under " at their posts in the tribune with a continuous mass of sheets and more sheets containing news of other sports which at that moment might be of no interest to them.
For these services the Press Centre disposed of a group of valets who, in appropriate shifts of daily work, saw to the continual replenishing of the pigeon-holes and the immediate distribution of the communiques in the various Press sectors.
A considerable number of obstacles had to be overcome in order that the accredited Press should obtain access to the Olympic Village. First of all, the hostility of the Heads of Mission towards all that might disturb the calmest possible daily life of the athletes inside the Village itself had to be faced. In order to favour the accredited journalists, access to the Olympic Village was only allowed within certain time limits (morning from 10 a.m. to 12 noon; afternoon from 4 p.m. to 6.30 p.m.), thus excluding those times devoted to the rest and meals of the athletes. The journalist desiring to enter the Olympic Village had to deposit his own Olympic Card at the entrance, obtaining in exchange a document which allowed him access; then, at the conclusion of his mission, the journalist gave back the document in exchange for his Olympic Card.
The selection of non-accredited journalists and photographers to whom it was necessary to give a possibility of work within the Olympic Village proved much more difficult, in view of the fact that their accredited colleagues were employed in the competition venues.
A considerable number of those requesting access were selected and were able repeatedly to obtain special access permits. (Table No. 7).
At this point it would be well to remember that during the four-year period of preparation for the Games, the officials of the Press Services received a considerable number of visits from foreign journalists particularly interested in the technical preparation of the sports venues and in the means of information placed at the disposal of the International Press. The fact that, as reported, at least 1,781 foreign journalists, representing 51 Nations, obtained information on the organization and photographic material for their services appears of some interest.
These were all interested in learning what the organizing criteria were and almost all were thereafter accompanied on a visit of the sports venues already constructed or in course of construction. But from 6th August 1960 onwards only officially accredited journalists and photographers were allowed into the competition and training venues. Access to training venues was allowed at the times of beginning of training itself in special sectors reserved for the press.
During the Olympic events, the accredited journalists had free access to the venues in tribunes and in reserved seats (Table No. 8). The Press seats prepared in the Basilica of Maxentius (Wrestling), the Cristoforo Colombo Circuit and the Grottarossa Circuit (Cycling), as also the Arch of Constantine (Marathon) were not entirely used.

The problems in connection with information

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In view of the special situation of the competition venues centralised in two distinct sectors of the city, it was decided to set up two sub-centres in addition to the Press Centre, one of them in the centre of the Foro Italico (covered Swimming Pool) while the other, serving the sector of the E.U.R., was obtained by reinforcing the Press sector in Palazzo dello Sport.
In any case the technical equipment for the transmission of services was extended to each single competition venue, where Press sectors were set up equipped with the following means of rapid transmission: telephone lines, telephoto lines, and Italcable service.
The International Agencies were favoured by the choice and concession, for their exclusive benefit, of a gigantic hall in the Domus Pacis divided between these Agencies where they could set up a true and proper Olympic headquarters.
The spaces assigned and subsequently divided up by means of insulating material were the following: Associated Press, Reuters, France Presse, Sport Informations Dienst and A.D.N.
For the other Agencies (the Deutsche Press Agentur and others) a solution was found by allotting more modest spaces in the rooms of the Domus Mariae and the Domus Pacis.
The spacious work-room of the Press Centre (Domus Mariae) was equipped with special panels organized by the Olivetti Company.
In addition, the Olivetti Co. placed 1,000 Olivetti typewriters, 600 of them table models and 400 portable machines, at the disposal of the journalists in the various Press rooms and even in their own rooms in the Press Centre.
These 1,000 typewriters were rationally subdivided into the various international keyboards, so as to satisfy as nearly as possible the cosmopolitan nucleus of journalists coming from all parts of the world.
The 400 portable machines were issued, on request by the interested parties, to journalists intending to work in their own rooms. (Table No. 9).
For the communiques issued from the Press Centre, stencil paper of 21.9 X 33 cm. size in 18 different colours was chosen; that is, a different colour for each sport.
For the drafting of the communiques themselves, intended to meet the requirements of the Press, i.e. journalists, radio reporters, and telereporters and for the various collections and record purposes, the Press Centre arranged for the printing of 1,800 copies of each communique.
It should be remembered that the individual competition venues were absolutely autonomous as regards the production and distribution of the communiques which were also placed at the disposal of the journalists present.
On the other hand, the communiques circulated by the Press Centre were placed in the appropriate pigeon-holes of the accredited journalists. They were then checked, condensed, and arranged in a summarized form, by means of a photographic reproducer (reproduction in offset) which allowed the reduction and consequent grouping together of more communiques on a single page.

Accommodation assistance

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A true picture of the activities carried out by the Section to create a better atmosphere for the accomplishment of the work of the accredited journalists cannot be obtained without the addition also of the various important initiatives and steps taken, each of which had different objectives and faced different problems. In this connection, it should be remembered that a special Accommodation Office was set up the Press Centre for the lodging and subsequent assistance of all the journalists who tentatively requested and were granted lodging in the two hotel complexes of the Domus Mariae and the Domus Pacis.
In fact, we repeat, all those journalists who expressed the desire, were assured lodging in the two above-mentioned comfortable hotels. This help with accommodation was much appreciated by the journalists, as is obvious from the number of those who took advantage of the lodging thus offered, a number exceeding three quarters of the officially accredited journalists.
The Accommodation Office, in direct collaboration with the respective Managements of the two hotel complexes, registered the following figures: at the Domus Pacis, 9,500 days of residence (persons X days) in all; at the Domus Mariae, 7,263 days of residence.
The help rendered to journalists was not limited to the sector of housing in hotels alone. In order to allow the rapid movement of the journalists, in view of the limited availability of the " parking discs " placed at the disposal of the Agencies and the principal newspapers, and taking into consideration also the limited capacity of the parking zones in most of the Olympic venues, autonomous bus services were set up for the exclusive use of the journalists, with such frequent services as to permit an ordered and continuous inflow of the representatives of the Press to all the sites of competitions.
In addition, emergency services were established from day to day in accordance with the necessities that arose, serving those Olympic venues most difficult to get to.
The journalists could, in addition, make use, on request, of a helicopter placed at their disposal by the Innocenti Company, this being particularly useful for rapid displacements and for taking photographs of certain special events.
Receptions for the Press were limited in number so as not to interfere with the journalists, all fully engaged in the resolving of their particularly onerous tasks.
In fact there were two receptions reserved to the journalists alone: the first was offered by the President of the Republic and took place at the Quirinal Palace; the second took place on the initiative of the Italian Confederation of Industry and was held in the Baths of Diocletian. In the course of this latter reception, the Confindustria arranged for lots to be drawn among the journalists for two Fiat 500 motorcars, sixty portable Olivetti typewriters and other valuable and appreciated gifts.

The photographic pool

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A delicate problem and one difficult to solve was undoubtedly that which concerned the organization of photographic services.
It is necessary first of all to point out that, in this case, it was absolutely impossible to refer to or do draw on the experience of precedents in the previous Olympic Games (Helsinki and Melbourne) insofar as the Games of the XVII Olympiad started a new phase in Olympic history, that is, for the first time it saw the direct and continuous television transmission of the Games.
The television on competition venues themselves posed difficult problems of a technical nature: the most basic ones arose from the necessity of allowing space inside the venues to a considerable number of television operators and technicians, whose presence on the spot was ensured only at the price of the reduction of other sectors, so as not to run the serious danger of disturbing or altering the technical rhythm of the events.
In order that this reduction should not affect the number of competition judges or operators working on the Olympic film and those forming part of the technical organization or the participants, it was obviously possible only by reducing the number of the photographers.
Besides, the requests flooding in from all parts of the world from photographic agencies, photographers of important newspapers, and photo-reporters in general made it immediately obvious that this drastic solution would not be effected without encountering considerable resistance; thus, it was necessary to face the problem, choosing the solution most satisfactory to the technical organization.
Following a tentative examination of the " stadium situation", it was found impossible to accommodate more than 6 photographers inside the competition venues. This situation was aggravated still further by the fact that in certain venues the number of photographers in the venue was even less than 6 on account of the prior instructions issued by the respective International Sports Federations. Since the maximum number of the stadia in use at one and the same time was twelve, it follows that the total number of accredited photographers inside the competition venues was calculated at a maximum of 72 (6 X 12) with a total of 1,354 daily presences.
On this basis a single international " pool" called " Olympia " was set up and entrusted to 6 worldwide and international type agencies, that is: United Press International, Associated Press, European Picture Union, Keystone, Agenzia Nazionale Stampa Associata (A.N.S.A.) and Agenzia Italia.
The members of such a " pool" constituted a single service unit, with the reciprocal obligation of immediate circulation of every photograph taken by the respective operators, this being in the form of exchange between associates.
The Organizing Committee took pains to furnish the "Olympia" pool with the necessary space for the setting up of competent laboratories located at the Press sub-centre at the Foro Italico. This complex of Agencies, gathered in a " pool ", assured the covering of every aspect, even marginal, of the events of the Rome Olympic Games.
In order to favour the photographers of newspapers with a very large circulation, especially for the taking of colour photographs, 17 cards were issued, valid only in special sectors of the stand of the Olympic Stadium. They were assigned as follows: Germany 4 cards, France 4, United States 4, Japan 4, Switzerland 1.
It was calculated that the " pool " effected daily some 3,000 negatives for more than 54,000 photographs, thus adequately covering every one of the sports of the Games and every one of the nations represented in the stadia.
Newspapers of all countries were thus able to receive sufficient photographic material to satisfy each and every requirement directly in their offices, by means of circuits prepared by the " pool ". (Table No. 11).
It should be noted that many photographers operated freely from the back seats of the Stadia, in the capacity of paying spectators, and in such cases it was not possible to effect any control of their production, which was carried out completely outside the " pool" and the official services.

Daily programmes

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The daily programmes demanded extremely complex work in setting up and execution. The time factor, precision and the urgent nature of the work in fact rendered necessary a study on concrete bases and particular safeguards; and in view of these vital requirements, recourse was also had to the experience acquired in this sector by the management of preceding Olympic Games.
In Spring of 1958, a first project concerning the classification, printing, circulation, distribution, and sale of programmes was drawn up. This complex general plan provided for: a) the type of covers, b) type of individual programmes (daily – periodical – single issues), c) contents of each programme and number of pages, d) number of copies of each programme.
In addition, the project also included an accurate analysis of the necessary precautions to be taken during the work so as to eliminate as far as possible the underlying causes of possible errors or difficulties in the printing and circulation.
In May 1960 the " Programme Centre " was set up and preparations made for an office which was charged with the collection of all the data to be inserted in the programmes. At first the editing was limited to a small number of experts with special experience in this type of work. The editing staff was gradually increased until the point was reached where there was an editor, plus assistants, for each sport on the programme.
In view of the fact that the work would have implied considerable difficulties of realization if carried out by a single printing press, a publishing agreement was decided upon with four printing firms and the necessity of anticipating and studying all guarantees necessary for the urgent compilation of programmes was recognized.
On the basis of a calculation regarding the number of copies and the number of pages of each programme, in May 1960 it was decided to take the opportunity of setting aside the quantity of paper necessary for the texts and the covers. Thus a million sheets, equivalent to 2,000 reams, for the texts and 145,000 sheets, equivalent to 290 reams, for the covers were purchased.
Meanwhile, the editing staff intensified the work of collecting all data which it was intended to insert in the texts (winners of previous Olympic Games and world and Olympic record-holders – times and order of events – clarification and explanations) and began the setting up and compilation of the type sets of the programmes themselves on the following bases: – a) for the cover: two-colour background printing, with reproduction of the sports venue covering the entire two outside pages; abbreviations of the participating nations and outline of the general programme in the two inside pages; b) for the texts: world and Olympic record-holders; extracts from technical regulations; timetable; list of athletes entered; preface; information; graphs and other useful news.
The preparation of the programmes entered into its most intense work phase from the first ten days of August 1960 onwards, with a resultant recruiting of new qualified personnel and the subsequent burden of rapid printing by night.
On the basis of the projects worked out with the editing body, 52 programmes were printed, each of them fulfilling different technical requirements.
The work was effected in two stages: in the first stage the covers and the fixed compositions were printed; in the second stage final agreements were reached with the printing presses for the variable content of programmes (names of the athletes participating in the individual events and results of the events of the previous day). Since these could only be passed over from 8 p.m.
to 12 midnight each day, this implied a consequent feverish activity from 10 p.m. approximately to 7 a.m.; however, it was always effected in good time for the distribution of programmes in the stadia, in the Press Centre, and at points of affluence of the public.
With this premise, we now give a synthetic outline showing the type of daily programmes with the respective number of pages and relevant circulation, sale, and return. (Table No. 12).
As already indicated, for all the events 52 edition of various types were printed with a total circulation of 862,000 copies, of which 415,000 at the price of 200 lire per copy and 347,000 at the price of 150 lire per copy.
Of the total circulation of programmes, the Organizing Committee held back, for the needs of the organization as well as for distribution of free copies, etc., 39,200 copies of the type at 200 lire and 107,526 copies of the type at 150 lire.
On the basis of experience gained in previous Olympic Games it was clearly shown that the production of daily programmes was never a profitable business from an economic point of view, and that rather it always constituted a considerable financial loss, partly also on account of the difficulties of simultaneous distribution to distant parts of the world. It was, however, considered that the setting up of the programmes of the Rome Olympic Games would reach the desired objectives, namely, worthy covers for the programme, meticulous study of technical data, precision and correctness of contents, timely production of programmes destined for the Organizing Committee and for sale. However, the sale of programmes cannot be said to have been a success.

The Press Service for Yachting

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The Press Service in Naples was set up in premises placed at its disposal by the President of the Provincial Press Association and was directed by Mr.
Bruno Ziravello. 106 journalists, of which 51 foreign and 45 Italian, were present for the yachting events.
The premises of the Press Office were equipped with a pigeon-hole bracket, two direct telephones (one to Rome and one to the Naples Olympia Exchange), three ordinary telephones, 35 typewriters, a radio room with a direct transmission service and recording service for 17 foreign radio commentators and a transmission studio for Naples Radio.

Radio and Television

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One hundred and eight television organisations from all over the world, assisted in various ways by R.A.I. (Italian Radio and TV Company), enabled the public from 69 countries in the five Continents to follow the Games of the XVII Olympiad by both radio and television. To be more precise, 75 organizations from 60 countries effected radio transmissions with the assistance of R.A.I., 23 organizations from 21 countries received live and deferred television programmes produced by R.A.I. and 60 organizations from 37 countries made use of the daily journalistic film accounts also produced by R.A.I. and sent daily to all those who requested this service.
The radio and television service set up for the Rome Games has no precedent in the history of the modern Olympiads nor does it bear any comparison for the breadth of its coverage and the complexity of its organization to any other type of news service ever undertaken by any radio and TV organization.
The events of the Rome Games were seen in live transmission by the public of 18 European countries and, with only a few hours of interval, also in the United States, Canada, and Japan; whereas most of the countries represented in Rome could follow the exploits of their athletes by means of a direct radiophonic service transmitted to all corners of the earth.
The creation of a link of these proportions could obviously not be improvised and, in fact, it was due to the existence of a very precise organization carefully prepared down to the slightest details. R.A.I., as concessionnaire for the radio and television service in Italy during the Rome Olympic Games, was fully aware of the responsibilities involved. It considered its duty was not only to attend to the transmission of radio and television services for the Italian public, but also to produce a specific TV service for foreign countries.
As far back as 1958, R.A.I. had set up a special Olympic centre,  under Prof. Italo Neri, an independent and self-sufficing organization capable of providing every necessary technical and organizational requirement for producing an efficient service which could be used during the Games to act as an autonomous production centre for the broadcasting of radio and television programmes from all the stadia and competition venues to all countries in the world.

The Television service

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The cross-link permutator, divided up into four successive panels of one hundred by four hundred lines (no room space could possibly have accommodated this whole owing to the exceptional dimensions involved) represented the key to the radio service as well as to the problem involving audio-lines for television.
The organization of the television service, rather simpler in some ways and yet more complex in others, presented obstacles of a new type. On the second floor of the College of Music, the master Direction Unit with its studio proper was installed. It was in contact, on the one hand, with the adjacent TTVE (the master installation which was in control of all the interested television parties which were linked by a permanent telephone circuit) and with the video centre, on the other, which was situated in the basement of the building.
(Table No. 15).
The master direction unit had the task of piloting the programme upon receiving and selecting the images coming in from all the sports venues, in close collaboration with the TTVE from which it could receive all suggestions, whilst the video centre, upon reception of the signal, dealt with passing the programme to all the transmitters in Europe. In order to satisfy the particular individual requirements of organizations, arrangements had been made for a further two studios, with their relative direction units, for transmissions known as " unilateral" (unilateral transmissions, according to the definition of the Union Européenne de Radiodiffusion – U.E.R. – are those passed on to one or more foreign organizations but not broadcast on the network of the country of origin).
Mobile equipment and points in the competition venues had to be arranged for outside the Olympic Centre. It was not an easy problem when one  considers that all the organizations naturally wanted to have their own radio and TV point whilst it was not possible to appropriate more space from the studios than that allowed. After many inspections and careful study, it was at last possible to set up a reasonable number of positions (which later proved to be sufficient) in various ways and according to the importance of the event taking place in each venue and in view also of the possible interest shown by each country in the event. The most important stadium was of course the Olympic Stadium where, by making use of the 30 cabins allocated to R.A.I., it was possible to set up 38 radio positions which, in more than one case, were simultaneously all fully occupied.
Next followed the Arch of Constantine with 30 positions for the finish of the Marathon, the Swimming Stadium, the Palazzo dello Sport, the Flaminio Stadium with 28, the Basilica of Maxentius with 19, the Palazzetto dello Sport, the Olympic Velodrome, the Baths of Caracalla and the Cristoforo Colombo circuit with 16, together with many others making up a total of 298 positions in 18 of the 22 venues for the Rome Games.

The technical apparatus

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It was only at Passo Corese, the Cesano Shooting Range, the Pratoni del Vivaro and Acquasanta that it was not considered necessary to lay on fixed positions and commentators wishing to serve these venues were equipped with portable tape-recorders. Portable tape-recorders were particularly useful at Naples on board the special launches which followed the yachting races.
In order adequately to equip both the radiophonic studios and the radio commentator positions, the following were required: 600 microphones, 527 microphone amplifiers, a further 276 amplifiers of various types, 210 tape-recorders for recording purposes, 164 portable tape-recorders, 103 tape-recorders on a closed circuit, 650 ear-phones, 750 field telephones, 200 telephones with transistor amplifiers, 200 normal telephones, 1,030 duplex line cables connecting the competition venues for a total coverage of 5,000 kms. and a further 73 kms. of cable for internal links with diverse duplex lines.
The positions for telecommentators presented a very much more difficult problem to solve. The ideal would have been to set up as many positions as there were organizations connected in each of the venues and for which a service was foreseen (practically all of the organizations). It was therefore decided to divide up the competition venues into two separate groups, those described as " main" (the Olympic Stadium, Swimming Stadium, Flaminio Stadium, Palazzo dello Sport) and " secondary " (all the remainder). In the four main stadia, selected as such not only because of the importance of the events taking place there but also because of the greater amount of coverage envisaged, eighteen positions were set up which were sufficient to  accommodate the commentators from all the organizations present in Rome grouped together, in certain cases, according to language. In the other venues, on the other hand, only four positions were set up: one for the Italian commentator, one available for special services and one each for two pilot commentators especially selected by the U.E.R. These passed their commentaries in English and French to the representatives of all the foreign organizations situated in the main stadia. The foreign telecommentator who was in one of the four stadia could thus make his live report on the event taking place in front of his eyes and, relying for news of events in other venues on a monitor, receive a continuous flow of news and explanations from one of the two pilot commentators broadcasting on the spot elsewhere through ear-phones in the special " Commentator boxes " of the U.E.R. type which were used for the first time on this occasion.
An equally tricky problem was that of the camera positions in all the stadia where the requirements for an efficient TV coverage had to be reconciled, on the one hand, with the legitimate right of the public not to have their view obstructed and, on the other, not to cause disturbance to the athletes competing.
In certain stadia, such as the Swimming Stadium, eight positions were catered for so that the various types of events (swimming, waterpolo, and diving) could be covered and the various positions of the sun obviated. The positions on the Olympic Stadium were particularly numerous. Here six cameras were used to cover the inauguration ceremony (plus a seventh on the slopes of the nearby Monte Mario). Use was, however, made of a greater number of positions which varied from day to day in accordance with the type of event.

The production of filmed services

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In order to have a sufficient number of installations for mobile coverage and so as not to have to cause too frequent movement of teams from one stadium to another, R.A.I. concentrated the greater part of its coverage teams in Rome, withdrawing them from its other centres in Milan, Turin, and Naples.
The super TV Direction Unit of the Olympic Centre could thus count on twelve coverage teams of various types: one van with 4 cameras, 7 vans with 3 cameras, 3 vans with 2 cameras, and one van with one camera. Five of these vans were permanently situated in the Olympic Stadium, the Palazzo dello Sport, the Flaminio Stadium, the Palazzetto dello Sport, and in the Olympic Village (where a fourth studio was set up to facilitate interviews with athletes).
The remaining seven vans were used in the other competition venues in accordance with the requirements for coverage but by means of a plan which reduced moves to an absolute minimum.
For the production of film services to be sent to 60 organisations which had asked for this, the following were used: 24 moviolas, 32 film cameras, 3 processing machines for reversal, 3 processing machines for positive and negative prints, and 4 film copying machines, of which two at high velocity rotation.
This material permitted a more rapid production and immediate delivery to 37 different countries of the 9 minutes daily filmed coverage which, in accordance with the Olympic Regulations, could be transmitted in three separate news services with an interval between each.
Both for the radio service and the television service it was absolutely necessary to have a great number of technicians of proven experience and, in fact, of the 960 persons engaged in the Olympic Centre, fifty per cent consisted of technicians in one of these two branches. In order to be able to dispose of the 245 Radio and the 223 TV technicians required, without counting the 18 radio commentators, the 17 TV commentators, 10 directors, 32 cineoperators, and 20 editors, R.A.I. called upon its specialists from all other centres in Italy, preferring to reduce other services to a minimum, particularly outside Rome, rather than to have to rely on chance personnel not sufficiently trained on this special occasion.
Besides the technicians the presence of the interpreters, which R.A.I. had recruited well ahead of time so as to be able to rely on the best and most qualified personnel for the service, was considered indispensable. Fifty-two of these, 36 young ladies and 16 young men of an average age of 22, selected not only for their knowledge of languages but also for their physical fitness which enabled them to stand up to the fatigue of the occasion, were used as a means of liaison between the Italian technicians and the radio and TV commentators in the RS studios and in the competition venues. They were employed on August 1st, having undergone a training course which included visits to the venues, telephone communication tests, lessons on the television organization, and on the technical functioning of transmissions. A further 24 interpreters, selected especially for their knowledge of several languages and for their experience of television organization, were also employed, after special selection, for use in the various offices of the Olympic Centre (bookings, information, results, etc.).
All foreign journalists present in the Centre were continually kept informed of what was going on in the various venues by means of two teleprinter circuits, six large television sets installed in such a way as to permit vision of current events from any point in the workroom, an electrically controlled board showing the venues where events were taking place and another showing the winners of medals, two blackboards where the main results of the day were shown and, in addition, printed leaflets on results supplied three times daily by the Press Services Section of the Organizing Committee.
The problem of transport was solved by arranging for a service which included 166 vehicles. Of these, 31 were used for the filmed requirements (which necessitated the maximum urgency), 8 for the movements of TV commentators, 13 for the radio commentators, 63 for the television coverage, 27 for the radio coverage and 15 for various other uses. During the three weeks of the Games, the R.A.I. transport vehicles covered a total of 243,760 kilometres with a total consumption of 21,000 litres of petrol, 8,000 litres of diesel oil and 168 litres of engine oil.
The least difficulty problem turned out to be the question of accommodation, which had been attended to well ahead of time. The Italian technical personnel brought into Rome from the various centres were accommodated in a building in the Olympic Village; foreign personnel were allowed the freedom to choose accommodation most appropriate to themselves, which the Olympic Centre was always prepared to indicate. On the other hand, the despatch of the daily filmed service to the 60 foreign organizations which had asked for this might have been very much more complicated had R.A.I. not entered into an agreement with the Ministry of Finance to simplify customs formalities because of the exceptional circumstances and the authentic reasons for urgency.
As a result of this organization, on the evening of 25th August, the Olympic Centre was able to set in motion a radio and television service for all the organisations connected to the vast network of transmissions which were to supply the world with a description and images of the inauguration Ceremony.
On the evening of 25th August, Radio Olympia took up its duty as a news service which enabled the public to follow all that was taking place in the twenty- two competition venues. Radio Olympia, with its eighteen specialized commentators, was present at all the sport events, providing live commentaries, interviews, news, and explanations.

93 hours and 40 minutes of transmission

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The road cycling events, the fifty kilometre walk, and the Marathon were followed in their entirety as a result of many radio positions. It was especially possible to organize a chain radio commentary for the Marathon in the final forty-minute phase by means of a number of microphone positions situated along the course from the thirtieth kilometre until the finish at the Arch of Constantine. This permitted radio commentators to describe the efforts of the competitors almost as if they were following the athletes themselves.
With its 93 hours and 40 minutes of broadcasting, divided up into the three daily portions and with its effective 279 links, of which 70 were in duplex, 38 in triplex and 24 on a chain basis, Radio Olympia undoubtedly set up a most admirable and up-to-date example of radio journalism. But when considering the whole of the Olympic Centre, Radio Olympia was only one of the fifty-eight studios which were transmitting programmes throughout the world.
On the terrace of the College of Music, 242 foreign radio commentators, together with the technical personnel and interpreters placed at their disposal by R.A.I., were occupied at all hours of the day and night in transmitting their services, thus putting the efficiency of the organization to a severe test. The special correspondent of the Argentinian radio would finish his broadcast at half-past two in the morning, whilst at half-past four arrangements had to be made for the circuit for the Australian correspondent who started his Olympic service for the listeners of that continent. The main difficulty was that of the continuous variations in the programme, both as regards the hour of transmission and the link required by each organization. The various requests had been brought up-to-date until one month before the Games and a detailed list had been worked out for the requirements of each organisation. But in actual point of fact, the variations were so many and frequent that it was considered appropriate to do away with all reservations placed in advance and to prepare a new daily list of requirements. To quote an example, on the 29th August, the foreign organizations requested a total of 486 services, of which only 136 corresponded to reservations made up to 30th June and 350 were completely new services which necessitated a great number of changes in the programme for that day. 72 % of services asked for in one single day were in excess or different from the reservations made in advance; and this is not an isolated case but is based on an average.
In order to prepare the new lists, establish links with the circuits, and deal with the allotment of positions in the competition venues on the new arrangement for requests received each day of the Games up to 19.00 hrs. on the day before, the personnel of the technical office and reservation office had to work in shifts during the whole night.
The allotment of positions in the various competition venues was established in accordance with the alphabetical order of the countries of origin of the organizations requesting this service, priority being given to those who were broadcasting live as opposed to those who were recording. Certain exceptions were made in the case of football, as positions affording the best visibility were allocated to the correspondents whose teams were in competition.  A completely different criterion was adopted for the Olympic Stadium and the Swimming Stadium where placing was of extreme importance, as the positions were along a long single row which effected visibility along the finishing line. Here a drawing of lots in alphabetical order was effected for the allotment of the first day and on a rotation basis for subsequent days, thus ensuring that organizations had positions with the best visibility on at least a certain number of days.
By summarizing all the different types of services, direct transmissions from venues and studios, recordings and editing in the studios, recordings on portable tape-recorders, and studio commentaries by radio commentators present at the venues as observers, a total of 6,338 services (Table No. 17) passed to transmitters of 75 different organizations was arrived at which (taking into consideration that two circuits were used for each transmission) meant that the international circuits were used for a total of 2,789 hours.

Television transmissions

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On the eve of the Rome Games, the eyes of the whole world were focussed above all on television, the use of which constituted the main new feature of the Olympiad.
There were twenty-one countries linked to television coverage of the Games: the fourteen countries comprised in Eurovision (Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Western Germany, Great Britain, Holland, Italy, Luxembourg, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and Yugoslavia); the four of Intervision (Czechoslovakia, Eastern Germany, Hungary and Poland); the United States and Canada through the medium of the CBS organization; and Japan through NHK. Spain and Portugal had, up to a few weeks before the Games, hoped to have been linked but this was unsuccessful, whereas the Soviet Union had already communicated that it would be unable to have its necessary video link ready by 25th August. Whereas eighteen countries were able to receive live transmissions, the other three had to undergo a delay of several hours.
However, the two contractual companies for this service organized themselves to reduce this delay to a minimum. The video signal was directly recorded on magnetic tape at the airport and reels were despatched by the first jet aircraft departing for New York and Tokyo.
Finding common agreement between representatives from twenty-one countries on a single programme which was acceptable to all was no easy undertaking and the setting out of the television programme chart of the Games had to be changed on more than one occasion. A final approximate layout was only agreed to a few days before the Games after many long and laborious meetings between all the participating organizations.
The choice of the events to be televised had to take various criteria into account; for some of these, such as the importance of the sport and  the effectiveness as a television spectacle, it was not difficult to arrive at unanimous decisions. But there were others such as popularity, probabilities of victory, and placing where the participating organizations disagreed. To come to a compromise, it was necessary to increase the space allocated daily to the Olympic transmissions so as to ensure the maximum amount of coverage from the major number of venues. Above all, considerable goodwill was called for from all the organizations, the Italian one included, in foregoing their natural desire to produce a programme of particular interest to their own viewers and to organize a time-table as international as possible in character. Priority was frequently given to sports which mainly interested foreign countries even when this meant a reduction in the sports which were of special interest to the Italian public (the case of cycling may be quoted).
The programme was, however, subject to a daily revision during morning meetings at which those foreign organizations linked by a special circuit were present and again verified, with possible slight changes, three hours before the start of a transmission during a meeting at which all responsible bodies from the TTVE master control and master direction unit, heads of missions technicians, assistant commentators, and pilot commentators were present.
This was held daily at 11.45 hours.
On the 3rd September, there were continuous switches, by means of 11 commutations, from the Olympic Stadium, where important athletic events were taking place, to Lake Albano where the finals of the rowing events were being held.
In order to overcome the problem of concurrence of events, the two magnetic tape-recorders installed in the Olympic Centre were found to be most useful, as these permitted the recording of at least another event. They were particularly useful on the many occasions when events started later than the established time or when they finished earlier and they were also helpful in recording those events of direct interest to Italy. It would especially have been impossible to transmit the more important swimming events without making use of these recorders as those events usually took place at times of transmission of other scheduled programmes in both Italy and abroad. These recorders were used for transmission on five occasions, a few moments after completion of the event and resulted in being of greater interest as all pauses had been eliminated.
The commentary for the recordings was generally made in the studio of the Master Direction Unit of the Olympic Centre, where the commentator was able to follow the images and sound effects which had been recorded as well as receive data, news, and suggestions from his colleague at the venue by earphone.
The number of telecommentators used by R.A.I. in the competition venues was seventeen all told, these having been selected on the basis of a criterion of experience. Only three of them described three different sports to the Italian public, whilst all the others only commented on one single sport.
The telecommentators normally work in couples but for athletics and cycling three were always used together with the help of two informers.
The same criterion of experience was adopted for the eight directors, all experts in sports coverage, each of whom directed all the transmissions from the same venue and only passing on to another venue when the events in the first had been completed. Three of them had to be used for the Marathon event which was covered by four mobile units.
Throughout the sixteen days of the Olympic Games, 102 hours of live television were covered, of which 96 hours 30 minutes were passed abroad as well as through the R.A.I. network. The peak was reached on September 10th with 8 hours 30 minutes of coverage on Olympic events, whilst the minimum was on September 11th (Closing of the Games) with a coverage of 3 hours.
The average was over 6 hours daily.

Special transmissions

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Of the five and a half hours of transmission not passed abroad, only three concerned sports events proper, the remainder consisting of interviews transmitted from the studio in the Olympic Village which used the video for 15 minutes approximately in ten days of the Games.
It should be remembered that our interviewers met with various difficulties on account of the transmission hours coinciding with the times of meals of the athletes and the reluctance on the part of certain trainers who maintained that a television interview was harmful to the athletes. However, the fact that a studio had been established in the heart of the Olympic Village helped to overcome this and other obstacles, such as those of traffic and the necessity of always having to apply for permission from the Heads of Mission. In this studio, both the telecommentators and the athletes were able to follow events from a television set. This convenience, however, had an adverse effect in the case of the American, Nieder, who, when coming into the studio for an interview on the day of the high jump, was very upset to see the unexpected defeat of his fellow-countryman, Thomas.
The other countries were also able to produce their own special transmissions and interviews. In fact, some of them were able to make use of exclusive live coverage thanks to the " unilateral " system in operation. These particular transmissions were rendered possible above all by two fundamental factors: (a) the numerous directions of emission of the television signal arranged for the Games (in addition to the RAI network, other circuits were available going outwards abroad, Rome-Milan-Switzerland and Rome-Milan-France, without counting the two independent links towards the recording installations of C.B.S. at Ciampino Airport and those of the Japanese N.H.K. at Fiumicino Airport); (6) the existence of three television studios close to the Master Unit which were capable of producing, recording, editing, and trasmitting a live television programme from the studio or from the competition venue, as well as filming or recording according to requirements. The organizing of these programmes fell to the organizations making request who used their own personnel but the responsibility for their production was entrusted to RAI in the same way as is normally the case for this type of programme in Eurovision.
In the three television studios for the " unilateral" system use was made of three directors, two production secretaries, three studio assistants, three light producers, three microphone assistants, two mechanics, two trolley workers, nine labourers, two make-up dressers, and a musical assistant over and above all the technical personnel.
Certain organizations made daily use of this possibility by fixing a night appointment with their viewers for an end-of-day round-up which included commentaries, interviews, news, films, recordings as well as live flashes and links with more than one venue. Every evening, therefore, the technicians had to arrange for successive programmes in studio " two " for Western Germany and Great Britain and in studio " three " programmes for Eastern Germany and France. But six other organizations in varying measure took advantage of this precious instrument both for studio transmissions and live transmissions which could not otherwise have been effected. A typical case was that of Denmark which succeeded in obtaining exclusive coverage for its viewers of the first half of the football final by asking for the " unilateral " only two days before the event, once the Danish team had won its semi-final.
Equipment for shooting special filmed services was also placed at the disposal of the foreign organizations. Nine of these took advantage of this and produced 173 special services, most of which were transmitted by the " unilateral ", which consisted mainly of interviews in the Olympic Village and portions of events of particular interest to the public of the organization in question.
But the real activity of the great cinematographic service set up by the TV was in effect another: that of the filmed news transmitted twice a day on the Eurovision network and, above all, distributed in copy to 60 organizations which had requested it and which involved the use of a good 198,000 metres of film. These accounts, which were always produced on the basis of the objective importance of the events without in any way taking into consideration either an Italian or European point of view, enabled the highlights of the Games to be passed to those distant countries which had perhaps never before received any television image and whose television service was as yet in the initial stages of development. The important place given to the Games on television and their presence on sets in many countries of Asia, Africa, Oceania, and South America may have contributed more than any other single factor in bringing home the reality of the Olympic ideal and in creating a better understanding of the spirit of the Games themselves.