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September 2004
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Birds Egg stadium already losing its shine

Only six months has passed since the Beijing Olympics and the Birds Nest stadium which hosted the spectacular opening and closing ceremonies is already beginning to lose its shine. The paint is peeling and stains have appeared on its famous lattice design. Accelerating the deterioration of the iconic National Stadium is the absence of a permanent tenant. [...]

Posted on 11 February 2009 | 12:06 am

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Read more on my travels

The Olympics are now over, but my adventures continue. You can continue following my travels in Asia here.

Posted on 17 October 2008 | 1:17 am

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Paralympics gets under away

The opening ceremony for the Paralympics was held last night in Beijing. The ceremony was spectacular but perhaps not on the scale of the ceremony for the Beijing Olympics. Most of the show was performed by people with disabilities, including Li Yue, who lost her left leg in the Sichuan earthquake and performed [...]

Posted on 6 September 2008 | 7:44 pm

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Paralympic display in Tiananmen Square

The Beijing Paralympics are just a day away from starting. Here are some pictures from Tiananmen Square which has some pretty impressive floral displays on show now.

Posted on 4 September 2008 | 8:59 pm

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Volkswagon Olympic cars

Posted on 4 September 2008 | 7:47 pm

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Beijing ticket scammers getting ready for London

The ticket scammers who defrauded people by selling non-existent tickets through the internet are getting ready for the Vancouver and London Olympics. “I was shocked by the brilliance and hard work of the thieves fleecing the Olympic family — and they are setting up to do the same thing in Vancouver in 2010 and London in [...]

Posted on 2 September 2008 | 8:23 pm

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Beijing’s answer to pollution - cloud seeding

Beijing did a lot to improve the air quality leading up to the Beijing Olympics, with mixed results. The days before the opening ceremony were pretty bad, but a burst of rain cleared the air and pollution became less of a talking point. Almost straight after the closing ceremony the hazy skies returned. A [...]

Posted on 1 September 2008 | 3:56 am

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Beijing has 6.52 million visitors for the Olympics

Beijing recorded 6.52 million visitors for the 2008 Olympics, with 382,000 of those coming from overseas. Authorities long estimated that 500,000 foreigners would visit the city, but tougher visa controls reduced that number. The Xinhua news agency reported that tourist spots in the city reported total revenues of 162 million yuan (US$23 million), according to [...]

Posted on 31 August 2008 | 8:34 pm

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Day 16: August 24th 2008

To the athletes tonight: You were true role models. You have shown us the unifying power of sport. The Olympic spirit lives in the warm embrace of competitive rivals from nations in conflict. Keep that spirit alive when you return home. These were truly exceptional Games! (Source: Dr Jacques Rogge, Chairman of the International Olympic [...]

Posted on 24 August 2008 | 4:39 pm

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Closing ceremony - what did you think?

The fireworks are still going on over Beijing tonight as the Olympics comes to a close. The closing ceremony wasnt as long as the first one and not as spectacular, but still very well done. We had a short section to mark the handover of the Olympics from Beijing to London. Londons mayor [...]

Posted on 24 August 2008 | 7:16 am

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June 27, 2004

Paul Hamm and Brett McClure In US Gymnastics Team

'Paul Hamm and Brett McClure secured their spots at the Athens Olympics on Saturday, while four more gymnasts waited to hear their names called, as well.

Hamm and McClure finished the Olympic trials the way they came in after national championships: ranked first and second in the overall scoring from the four meets -- two at nationals, two at trials -- that are used to pick the six-man team.

The top-two finishes earned them automatic spots. 'Source - Hamm, McClure make Olympics and wait for company

>> Read Related Olympics News in: Gymnastics News | US Olympic Team News
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Posted by Darren at June 27, 2004 03:53 PM

Hello Paul:
It’s unfortunate there was a mistake on the scoring, it wasn’t fair to you and less fair to the Korean.
I think YOU should TAKE CHARGE and have a meeting with the Koreans and exchange medals.
That would give you TRUE hero status, and you would be forever known as the American who had to do the right thing, instead of the American who DIDN’T REALLY win a gold medal.
The Korean was robbed of a gold medal and you were the lucky recipient of his misfortune.
Do the right thing, you’ll be a bigger winner.

Bill Allegretti (former gymnast)

Posted by: Bill Allegretti at August 22, 2004 11:52 PM

I agree 100%. Paul Hamm will generate so much good publicity for himself and the American Olympic team. Show the world that Americans can be selfless and fair.

Posted by: mike at August 23, 2004 03:13 AM


Your comments about the rules and how they should have never viewed the videotape is ridiculous. They are about as sleazy as a used car salesman. Rules were meant for rule breakers, not for us to hide behind. Do the fair thing. That is the ultimate rule that we should abide by. Share the gold.

Roy Smith

Posted by: roy smith at August 23, 2004 08:01 AM

Paul listen you deserve that gold medal if you didnt win it anyway, and the koreans should have spotted it earlier so as far as i am concerned that medal is 100% your, and i didnt forget your brother either hes cool

Posted by: patrick Musick (your greatest fan) at August 23, 2004 11:09 AM

Congratulations on your gold medal for the all-around and the silver medal for your outstanding performance on the high bar. You are an incredible athlete who deserves to feel great about all you accomplished at these Olympics. As long as our scoring is subjective, there will always be controversy and second guessing -- there's no way to be 100% accurate about a gymnastic score. To go back and review one individual's performance is unfair to all the other gymnasts. Keep your gold medal close to your heart and know that there are millions of us out here who are so proud of you and proud to have you represent our country!

Posted by: Deb Boon at August 24, 2004 01:51 PM

Hi Paul. I just want you to know that you should forget about all the controversies and just enjoy and cherish your medals. You absolutely deserved all that your earned. And you DID earn them. End of story. Great Olympic performances!!! Thank you from me and all of America!!!

Posted by: gerri c. at August 24, 2004 01:55 PM

There are some people who truly believe that you fully deserved that gold medal. The only gymnast who could have came back from a fall like that and stick two beautiful routines would have been an olympic gold medalist, and deservingly so, that is you Paul. Don't listen to all of the nay sayers out there. In fact, the Korean gymnast should not even have scored a 9.712 on the parallel bars. It's even more outrageous to think that he could have scored a 9.812 on his routine if they would have given him that 10.0 start value. The only gymnasts who did routines over a 9.8 that night was you and the Chinese gymnast, Yang Wei. So don't fret Paul. You have a great deal of people who love you and your gymnastics. Just don't listen to those who don't appreciate all that you've done for USA mens gymnastics.

Posted by: Ann Valero at August 24, 2004 05:55 PM

What a fantastic job you did representing the USA. You deserved the gold medal. You are an outstanding young man. I was proud of the way you handled yourself on Monday the 23rd. Not many athletics would have had the will to continue.
I support you and your brother. You guys are great.

Posted by: Cherri Alderson at August 24, 2004 11:59 PM

Paul Hamm should not have to worry about judging problems. He executed his routines and received a medal. End of story. Judge's mistakes are not his responsibility to fix.
Nobody knows what would have happened had those judges considered a starting value of 10 to the Korean's exercise. Maybe they would've been a little more severe in scoring and attentive to the Korean's errors, which it seems they missed. Maybe the pressure of being on top would've caused the Korean to falter in his next rotation. The judges made a mistake, against the Korean, yes, but they also made mistakes all night for and against all gymnasts. It all averages out and it would be absurd to go back, review every call and shuffle medals all around. Most of all it would be absurd to blame Paul Hamm, a deserving champion, for judging mistakes.

Posted by: Fernando Ybarra at August 25, 2004 04:01 AM

Part of being a great champion is accepting the results and not continue to whine and complain after a meet is over.

Paul Hamm is such a champion. I'm sure that if he had received the silver he would have been happy and accepted the result graciously.

This crap about him giving up his gold medal bothers me. Some even say that he would make him a hero. I don't think givin in to the stupid whining of a sore loser would make Paul Hamm a hero in anbody's eyes.

Keep your gold, Paul. You deserve it.

Posted by: A fan at August 25, 2004 04:10 AM

Somehow in this crazy messed up world, people are expecting Paul to give up a gold medal that he earned. In fact one sports editor said,

>But as matters stand Hamm has to live with the downside of the dispute, because he'll always be the guy who landed his vault in a judge's lap and no one should really win an Olympic gold medal after landing on a judge. <

In my book Paul Hamm will be the person that defied all odd and came back from last place to medal.

The way I see it is that had the US not won, the S. Korean probably wouldn't even be groussing right now.

In fact they seem to take no notice of the fact that there was a scoring error and a missed .2 deduction for exceeding the amount of holds on the routine. So even with a score adjustment, of the .1, they would theoretically have to adjust for the mistake of the .2 that was missed.......and that could theoretically knock him out of medal contention completely..........what a shocker.......

So YES Hamm DID earn the gold medal, and yes he should keep it.

Maybe this error will cause awareness of mistakes made and that yes people are human.

Is the gold tainted, not in my book.
Should there be a shared gold, NO.
Should the S. Koreans stop groussing, and realize that they made an error too....yes.

Maybe the gold to Paul Hamm, is worth more than any endorsement that he could recieve, after all some people are not about money.......He's a great athlete, and went after his dream......

It's not his fault that the judges erred, and maybe if they had not erred, than scoring events would have been different.....there's always room for speculation....

Posted by: Mooch at August 25, 2004 04:05 PM

As a former gymnastics coach and parent of a gymnast, we live the reality of the scoring situation during most competitions.
What is surprising to me, is that it is making international news. It's not a huge shock when start values are different at each meet. It's not a huge shock when judges make mistakes. The gymnasts and coaches who are affected by it usually recognize it for what it is - one meet, the next one will be different.
There are detailed rules on how to bring a scoring miscalculation to the judges attention during a meet and procedures to follow for all concerned. The fact that this "formal" complaint was filed well outside the rules and normal procedure leads me to believe one of two things is happening. Either the S.Koreans were filing to bring this matter to the public eye on behalf of all the athletes who are in judged sports, to point out problems OR they didn't actually expect Paul Hamm to pull it off, so they let the judging situation slide at the time...and only afterwards realized they missed their procedural opportunity and needed public opinion on their side.
If scenario #1 is true there are more gymnasts than just the S.Korean who would need to have their start values examined and recalculated including an American. If it is true, than we shall see the SKoreans as part of an ongoing drive to change the scoring, they will spearhead and insist on being a part of a lasting solution, not just a quick fix.
If scenario #2 is true, than no matter what quick fix was offered, it wouldn't be to better the sport or change the judging, it would be because a bunch of people outside the sport, with little understanding, were able to influence the governing body of gymnastics.
Should gymnastics judging be improved - YES. Does taking away a medal or changing the outcome of the event in hindsight fix the judging situation - NO. Should Paul Hamm feel responsible for saving face, making amends or offering a short term solution - NO, he didn't do anything wrong.

Posted by: K. Clark at August 25, 2004 05:49 PM

Dear Paul,

I believe you have NOT represented the US well in Athens. I believe that if you gave the Korean gymnast who won the gold medal his rightful reward by giving him the medal erroneously given to you, you would show the world what the US is about. It's about the Golden Rule and you are not following it by retaining a medal that does not belong to you. In these times when the US is looked upon so poorly by the rest of the world, you could make a difference by showing that our Great Country isn't just about winning, it's about being the best, that includes character not just performance. You are not faced with a tough dilemna, you are faced with an easy choice of character. Do the right thing and give the Korean his Olympic Gold. If your motivation for not giving up something that does not rightfully belong to you is material, let me know how much you want, how much you'll earn in your gymnastics tour by promoting yourself as "Olympic Gold Medal Winner Paul Hamm" and I'm sure that once you give the medal to its rightful owner you will earn one-hundredfold that amount in endorsements of "true character" if not, I will take up a donation and/or start a fundraiser to get you your material expectation,which won't be hard given that you'd be a person of great moral integrity at that point!

Posted by: drchogan1 at August 25, 2004 07:47 PM

Hey Paul,
You gave 110% to earn the gold, you deserve it. When it comes to the Olympics, the judges are the one's who know the technique and details involved in a routine which is why they are the people who give the final say. They thought you deserved the gold, that's why it's yours. Even though people are saying you should give it away, mainly for publicity purposes, you don't give away something that you rightfully earned. You won a gold medal. The first U.S. man to do so. Forget this stupid act of jealous squabbling and go enjoy being an olympic gold medalist!

Posted by: Emily at August 26, 2004 04:26 AM

Dear Paul-
You earned it, and sharing the gold may be a nice gesture, but an unjustified one. Everybody involved followed the rules of the game. You know that.

We can argue about changing the rules for the next time, don't get involved with second guessing the judging in order to defend yourself. Don't waste your energy.

Nobody can know what would have happened if something different had occurred on the playing field, if, for example, you or one of the other gymnasts had been awared a different score than you actually were at any point. Every athlete's awareness of their's and of others' scores are part of the playing conditions.

Perhaps if you'd been judged even more harshly for your fall you may have performed even better in your remaining events. Perhaps if the eventual silver medalist had been awared higher marks on the disputed event he may have relaxed and made more errors in the events that followed. Performances don't take place in a vacuum, and the conditions of the performances can't be changed after the rotation is over. At least, that's the rule now.

Would we really want to change that?

Posted by: P at August 26, 2004 06:44 AM


It is too bad that Paul Hamm cannot enjoy his gold medal, he is a young man who has worked hard to earn a medal at the Olympics. As far as I am concerned any medal is gold at the Olympics. But the the Olympics as many of us have forgotten is about fair play and sportsmanship and a true athlete should be able to gauge honestly how he or she did in an event. Mr. Hamm knows that because of his fall, he did not have a gold medal performance and because he knows this he should be willing to share his medal or give it over, that is a true athlete! I cannot believe he would not share his medal, it is the right thing to do. A person that can do the right thing, keeps his dignity and he will never really enjoy his medal unless he does the right thing. He is not being left alone and will not be until he really learns what being a true athlete.

Posted by: Soraya at August 28, 2004 01:01 AM

Paul is acting worse than a little kid. Look, you go to the store, you give the clerk a dollar for some candy. You get back change for five dollars. Do you just keep extra money? No. Why not? You didn't steal it. but it would be just as wrong. Then again, maybe Paul should keep the gold so everyone can see what kind of guy he really is. A loser.

Posted by: Fred at August 28, 2004 02:16 AM

Paul, the gold is yours. You won it fair and square. Keep it - don't even CONSIDER giving it to someone else - what an asinine suggestion for ANYONE to make.

Posted by: Kyrah at August 28, 2004 03:19 AM

If there is no difference betweening receiving a medal and earning a medal then let's just start handing them out wholesale - everybody gets one. Now that's something to be proud of.

Posted by: James at August 28, 2004 04:18 AM

Paul I think you did a great job and that you really do deserve the gold medal. You should keep it forever and don't let all this publicity tarnish it. By the way good job.

Posted by: Mara at August 28, 2004 05:50 AM

Paul Hamm is true campion and was a wonder to behold at the Olympics. He won that medal and most certainly should keep it. The South Korean coach knew the rule about the time limit on making a protest. Since he did not protest the score in the proper time period, it was a illegal protest. All this uproar and foolishless has mainly hurt the one completely blameless person in this mess, Paul Hamm. I have watched his interviews on NBC and I get the impression he has been hurt, confused and feel people are against him. Paul, you earned that gold, keep it and enjoy. Let the officals feel bad. Maybe if they feel bad enough they will come up with a better way to score. The sport desperalty needs it.

Posted by: Belinda at August 28, 2004 06:38 AM

Paul Hamm is my olympic champion!! I think he did a fabulous job representing the United States and farily earned himself a gold medal! I am glad that the IOC and the USOC are NOT agreeing with the FIG to give back the medal. When the tape was reviewed AGAIN an error was found in the S.Korean's parallel bars that would have taken out of the medals. Reviewing events AFTER a decision is made is Unfair! It makes me sad that Paul had to return home before the closing cerimonies and could not enjoy his medal and wonderful accomplishment. I KNOW paul hamm is the olympic champion and I hope that he always gets to keep his medal to show how much his hard work can pay off!!

Posted by: Amie at August 28, 2004 10:51 AM

Um, what the heck? Why is everyone being so arrogant about him keeping the gold? Yea, let's show the world how the Americans don't care when we win the gold unfairly, except when when someone else takes the gold away from us unfairly...Like if we lose a basketball game to Russia, I guess we have to protest and refuse to pick up the Silver medals. Hmm, yea, I wonder why the world hates us so much. It's the Olympics for crying out loud. Where's your sense of honor? If you KNOW you shouldn't have won, just give it back. It doesn't matter whose fault it is that he won the gold, the fact is, something got screwed up and he won the gold unfairly. Why not DO something to make it fair. Make it right. Don't be so arrogant, there's always next Olypics...

Posted by: B.S at August 28, 2004 11:04 AM

It's about time that USA gymnastics has finally gotten behind their olympic champion Paul Hamm. Paul's performance was one of the most exciting moments in sports history. I wonder if the Korean gymnast would like to give up his bronze medal since with the .2 deduction for excessive holds, he would have been completely out of medal contention. Don't let this stuff get you down, Paul. America knows who there champion is. You are such an excellent roll model for young gymnasts everywhere. We can't wait to see you on tour.

Posted by: karen at August 28, 2004 11:34 AM

It would be so easy to say that Paul Hamm should return his medal if it weren't for the fact that HE followed all the rules, yet the S. Korean coach didn't follow the rules, discovered his error, and raised a stink because he screwed up. There is a time limit to bringing scoring miscalculations to the judges. He didn't follow the rules and his gymnast suffered from his error. Let Paul keep his medal. He earned it.

Posted by: Sandy at August 28, 2004 03:24 PM

I hear over and over again about sportsmanship and the right thing for Paul Hamm to do. All the controversy behind the judges missing .100 of a point for Yang Tae-young which would make him the gold medalist. Here are some points that also should be made:

1. It is not Paul Hamm�s responsibility to solve this problem.
2. If you are going to harp on the .100 points that should have been added then you should also harp about the .200 points that should have been taken away for the extra hold.
3. If you were to completely correct the score it would probably have left Yang Tae-young without a medal at all.

Speaking of sportsmanship, when was the last time you heard an athlete or a coach protest that they received to high of a score. If the Koreans sat there and agonized over the tapes and the scores then NOT ONLY did they catch the fact that Yang Tae-young received a lower starting score, but that also he DID NOT receive the .200 deduction. Sportsmanship? I don�t hear Yang Tae-young stepping out making any statements about that! Paul Hamm has showed 10 times more sportsmanship then Yang Tae-young!

Congratulations Paul, you earned it and you deserve it 100%. You are in all rights a true Olympian!

Posted by: Lee at August 28, 2004 03:40 PM

The only thing Paul Hamm deserves is a spanking for his poor behavior. He makes all of America look bad.

Shame on him on all his double talk about how the judges should have scored him better anyway. He wants the judges to rescored the Korean through the microscope of video tape to look for additional possible deductions, while at the same time he doesn't want the judges to do the same for himself. He's happy so long as the competition is not on a level playing field.


Posted by: Joe at August 30, 2004 01:15 AM

I'd agree with both Joe's post above.

It is a shame that paul is acting like this way.
This will create a bad image for us U.S.A.

As I can re-call there are atlehtes from European countries from the past games did gave up their gold metals to the one that should have win it. This is a true sportsmenship and will be honor by us all.

Do the right thing!!!.

Posted by: Cooper at August 30, 2004 05:33 AM


Of course your not going to give back the medal even though you don't deserve it. It's cause your American.

Posted by: l p at August 30, 2004 07:24 AM

Dear Paul,
I feel for you that you worked your whole life for something, realized your goal, only to have the judges screw it up.
I was so proud watching you compete, and in the circles I travel you are the Olympic Champion. Please know that for every cynic out there, there are ten fans who adore you and whose hearts broke for you over the contraversy.

Posted by: Lisa at August 31, 2004 12:01 AM

It's like Sandy says, above...the Korean's cheated since they didn't discover the error in time. They should not profit from cheating.

Posted by: Bruce at August 31, 2004 02:52 AM

Paul Hamm won the gold medal for sure. The case is not that complicated, in fact, it is quite simple. I don't know why the public has such a hard time to understand that. It doesn't matter from which angle you look at, Paul Hamm is an All-Around Olympic Champion (AAOC). Here are why:

1. Before the controversy started, Paul placed first.

2. After the controversy, having review the tape of the Korean's performance, Paul still placed first because the 0.2 points deduction the judges missed on the Korean's routine. Based only on this account, the Korean would have to lose his bronze medal, and placed no higher than fourth (or possibly lower). If I were Yang Tae-Young, I would keep my mouth shut and be happy with the bronze.

3. The term gymnastics is a general term; the one we are talking about is actually called Artistic Gymnastics. The athletes were judged not only on the level of difficult skills they performed, but also judged on how well (i.e. how easy, how effortless, or how pretty) they performed the skills. This is when the subjective part of the judging steps in. When do a side-by-side comparison on both Paul and Yang's routines, overall, Paul's are more pleasant to watch.

4. Now, the following discussion is very subjective, but believe me, the judges had thought about it and slept with it before the season started. Suppose putting one gold medal on Yang, and one on Paul, and have them stand together for photo shoot, the majority of the photographers will agree on that the gold medal looks better on Paul than on Yang.

5. During the individual high bar final, the momentum was really favor the Korean while completely disfavor the American, and yet Paul was able to deliver a great performance while Yang messed up his badly. This already tells you who deserves the All-Around Olympic Champion Title.

American is not a wimp. We don't give up any medal just because of someone else is complaining, regardless the medal is gold or paper. The fact is that, if Yang still thinks he deserves the 0.1 points the judges owed to him, he then also deserves the 0.2 points the judges forgot to deduct.

Talking about sportsmanship, should Yang Tae-Young give up his bronze medal and accept the fourth finish placement?

Posted by: Elise Luong at August 31, 2004 06:32 AM


I don't buy the fact that Paul won the goal. He didn't deserve it.. bottomline... and his name will forever have an astrict next to it.

In football, bad calls happen all the time (receivers trap balls and refs miss it). This is what Paul referenced when he said after reviewing the S. Korean's performance there was an extra hold which would have costed .2.

But if, in Football, the judges awarded 2 points for a field goal, there would be riots. We're talking about a measurable not a subjective judging call. How many judging breaks did Paul or others get make that were misssed and upon review be noticed?? It silly to even bring the replay up.

I keep wondering what the U.S. response would be if the reverse happened. I pretty much think the U.S. would be screaming about the injustice and demanding a correction.

Posted by: vandu at August 31, 2004 12:21 PM

Vandu is total right about that.

Just take the time when Paul miss the landing completely and almost hit the side of the jurging table. We should replay that video tape over and over again and see how much points it really should be given. If its like Diving it would be score=0 (zero.

Its truly bad for paul to not even thinking of giving back the gold, but go in extend to make his point about the .2 points the korean's mistake. By doing this he has already showing the world he has no class and NO sportsmanship at all.

Posted by: ken at August 31, 2004 12:57 PM

Of course Paul WON the gold. Of course he didn't deserve to win just because of a clerical error. He wants to keep it, because it's what he has to show for 17 years of locking himself up in a gym instead of doing a variety of things like normal people do. You can't expect him to act in the way a normal person would. I say 'Paul, keep the medal... it will never bring you a moment of happiness.'

Posted by: Jibberjabber at September 1, 2004 03:19 AM

Stop being jealous of Paul Hamm's achievement. There is an old saying: He who cannot get a taste of a plum says the plum tasted sour.

Posted by: Andy at September 1, 2004 09:46 AM

I agree with Andy. I have read many bad comments about Paul not returning his gold medal. But I really think that Paul is the true winner. It is no longer Paul's own decision on giving up or not giving up his honorable prize, I simply don't allow it. (period)

Posted by: Jacky at September 1, 2004 10:02 AM

I agree with Andy. I have read many bad comments about Paul not returning his gold medal. But I really think that Paul is the true winner. It is no longer Paul's own decision on giving up or not giving up his honorable prize, I simply don't allow it. (period)

Posted by: Jacky at September 1, 2004 10:02 AM

Me too. I won't allow Paul to return his gold medal either.

You earned it Paul. No one has the right to ruin your olympic moment simply because he didn't have his. Case closed.

Posted by: Elise Luong at September 1, 2004 10:06 AM


you want to know what the US would do if the situation reversed (?). The US will accept the loss graciously. Based on past records, there was no US gymnast complaining about the starting value. Never. The whole controversy just would not exit at all. Furthermore, the US gymnast is smart enough to analyze his routine before asking for a review. There is no more embarrassment than being caught for another major error. Requesting a review is like opening a can of worms. Unless you are preparing to deal with these slimy creatures, you had better not opening the can in the first place.

Posted by: Wang Lee at September 2, 2004 07:17 AM

Hey you know what? I have a great suggestion for the judging committees in awarding prizes to the winners. Instead of awarding the winners with medals made of gold or silver or bronze, the winners should be awarded with something which can be consumed right away such as a piece of chocolate wrapped with golden foil. After the meets, if anyone realizes that that piece of chocolate should belong to him, he would have to dig it out from the toilet.

Posted by: Young Chang at September 2, 2004 07:39 AM


This is only your opinion, the people I have talked to do not agree with you. How opinionated when you said Paul made "all the American" look bad. You might feel that you look bad, but I don't. I am extremely proud of Paul. By not giving up what he earned is the right thing to do. On the other hand, spanking someone had the courage to comeback from 12th place to win the gold is a terrible thing to do.

Posted by: Jill at September 2, 2004 07:53 AM

Hey jibberjabber:

Who can define 'normal'? To me, not giving up somehting you earned is perfectly normal. However, sitting in front of the computer criticizing others' success is absolutely not normal.

Posted by: David Han at September 2, 2004 08:01 AM

Hey Wang, "The US will accept the loss graciously."..Are you high? They are already screaming bloody murder at the suggestion he give it back. That medal means money. Money for Paul, money for US gymnastics, money for USOC, money for anyone and any group that can leach on to it. He was given a gold medal at the games in error. He didn't earn it honestly, he just got it as the result of a clerical error. Nothing in his routine said he should have it. Nothing in anyones routine said he should have it. It's no more the product of his skill than if he found it on the ground. You have as much right to that gold medal as he does. Had the judging team made a similar mistake - such as writing in your name instead - then you would have the medal. And I bet you would still be fighting as hard to keep the medal you 'won'.

Of course not so the famous Mr. David Han, who is apparently not in front of his computer "criticizing others' success" because he does not like to be a hypocrite.

I weep for all the poor unfortunates whose twisted morality lets them fail to see the injustice.

Posted by: Jibberjabber at September 2, 2004 10:11 AM

The guy fell on his ass and they gave him a gold. How can anyone watch that crap is beyond me. What's next?

Posted by: Chester at September 2, 2004 10:14 AM

No one denied the fact that Paul Hamm fell hard on his vault, however, this is an 'all-around competition', the total score is used for crowning the AA Champion. As long as he got the highest overall score, he is the winner. It doesn't matter he fell on his ass or his nose. As the matter of fact, I replayed his fall over and over again, and the more I watched, the more I admired his courage for coming back.

Posted by: Young Chang at September 3, 2004 07:12 AM

Hey Jibberjabber:

Based on past records, yes, I believe so (the US will accept the loss graciously).

Like you pointed out, the games had errors. Errors on starting value, error on failing to deduct a major mistake. After the correction, the gap is even larger, which re-confirms that Paul is the true winner. To Yang Tae-Young and his supporters, the only thing I have to say is "Nice try".

Posted by: Wang Lee at September 3, 2004 07:32 AM

It is horrible that there should be such a rush to judgment. No one should ever be asked to return a medal. A win is a win. This is what is important. There is no value to a competition if it is subject to review and rethinking. When we stand upon the rostrum in front of the whole world, we are champions, and our Medal is the symbol. No one should be allowed to take that. No one should be asked to return it. It is something no one can rightfully take.

Posted by: Adrian Annus at September 3, 2004 07:38 AM

You are right about that I don't like to be a hypocrite, that's why I don't need to use rebbajrebbij type word to hide my true identity.

Posted by: David Han at September 3, 2004 07:40 AM

Dear the famous Jibberjabber:

You know what? That gold medal brings less money than if Paul Hamm and his coach file a lawsuit against the FIG for defamation, harassment, humiliation, emotional stress, and any endorsement loss due to this whole controversy.

I wonder why Paul hasn't done so. If it were happened to me, I would never let the FIG gets away with such crime!

Posted by: Irene Kuo at September 3, 2004 07:57 AM

Brilliant! Irene,

Your message is the best I have ever seen so far. I am 1000% support such legal action.

Posted by: Andy at September 3, 2004 08:04 AM

My Dear Irene:
You have no idea what you are talking about. You apparently have access to the internet. Spend some time and look up the torts you suggest. Discussion is much more fun when parties know something about what they claim. There is no legal cause of action for poor Paul. Not in a US court, not in a Greek court. And even if there were, FIG's defense is that they are telling the 'truth' and it is a pretty good one. The one shining bit here is that Paul will now make little, if any money off this debacle. And that is a just reward for ego and greed.

And that goes for you too, Andy.

Fond regards,


Posted by: jibberjabber at September 3, 2004 08:30 AM

Mr Han:
You, sir, are making no sense. Put the crack pipe down. Really.

Posted by: Jibberjabber at September 3, 2004 08:45 AM

Who was Paul Hamm? How was he related to Mia Hamm ?

Posted by: Dat Phan at September 4, 2004 02:29 AM

Well I think they should make a movie about the guy. It would be great to show to kids so they can see you not giving up can get you somewhere. Too bad his photos aren't selling better on eBay. I don't think he's gay, at all.

Posted by: Sientese Conyo at September 4, 2004 05:40 AM

Yeah, the FIG should tell the truth. The truth of incompetence in handling the matter professionally.

Posted by: Andy at September 4, 2004 06:03 AM

You are all entitled to your opinion, but I feel these mean-spitited remarks and all of the name calling is childish and downright wrong.

Paul Hamm is an amazing athlete and an excellent representation of America. He is a winner.

Posted by: Lisa at September 4, 2004 06:22 AM

My adorable Jibberjabber:

You must have forgotten we are living in the land of the free and the home of the brave. Anyone can sue anyone here. Case like an all-around oplympic champion was dopped is more than enough ground to justify a legal cause of action. Even a mediocre assistant attorney can win this case without moving his lips much.

For your information only, I have access to more than just the internet. Have a great weekend.

Posted by: Irene Kuo at September 4, 2004 06:30 AM

Mr. Jibberjabber:

Not until you stop damaging the imagine of an innocent young man, the greatest gymnast in US history.

Posted by: David Han at September 4, 2004 06:39 AM

Whose fault is it? There are so many people targeting Paul Hamm or Yang Tae-Young, only a few recognize where the root of the problem lies.

Paul and Yang are only athletes; their job is to perform the best they could on any competition. They train hard everyday in the gym, pay expensive coaching fees for a chance of realizing their Olympics dreams. It is the coaches who are responsible for all matters pertinent to the competitions, including but not limit to administrative tasks, competition rules and regulations (which were created for a reason), and etc. As important as the Olympics, experienced coaches pay attention to every single detail. Since the point of separating the top 3 medal contenders are only tens of thousandth of a point, any one of the top 3 could earn the AA Title, consequently, everything becomes matter. There is no excuse for a coach overlooked the incorrect starting value. There is no excuse for a coach not filing the complaint in a timely manner. Most importantly, there is no excuse for a coach not knowing the parallel bars allowed only 3 holds. In my opinion, it is that extra hold that had cost Yang Tae-Young the gold medal even if we ignore the 'timely issue'. So whose fault is it? Yang Tae-Young should say to his coach just like Donald Trump said to Omarosa Manigaul-Stallworth: "You're fired."

Posted by: Kimberly at September 4, 2004 08:01 AM

Imagine we are not talking a gold medal here; we are talking about a toy, the toy you awarded to a child a few days ago for his good behaviors. The child accepted it, loved it, played with it, slept with it, and formed a strong bond with it. Couple days later, you told the same child: "Sorry, I made a mistake for giving you that toy, it was not meant for you, it was for someone else, give it back." I have no word to describe how heartbroken that child would be. By all mean, that child has all the right to keep it.

Posted by: ETL at September 4, 2004 08:30 AM

My Darling Irene,
My love for you has no equal. I know that now. You will remain in my thoughts throughout this weekend. I cherish your every word.
Thank you for this gift.

Eternally yours,
Your humble and obedient servent,


Posted by: Jibberjabber at September 4, 2004 09:47 AM

Yes, Kimberly, you are so right. It was the coaches fault. And the fault of the fans, also.
Moreover, it is the responsibility of each of us to turn back in our medals so that paul can still be proud of his. I was a fool not to see this. And we should review the video of each and every performance and refigure the scores. If we do this for only 4 more years than we can be quite certain that no one is being taken undue advantage of.

Posted by: Jibberjabber at September 4, 2004 09:51 AM

I am sure at the end of each every competition, not everyone agrees on the results, however, the winners would never complain, the losers would have to live with the results whether it is justice or unjustice. In the history of international gymnastic competition, most winners were from Russia or Romania, does it mean that the judges made systematic errors? Does it mean that each every past and present competition should be re-scored? Or we only do this to Paul Hamm?

Knowing that it is impractical to review every performance, but for judging training purpose, it is necessary to RANDOMLY review tapes from past and present major competitions (not just the Olympics, but World Championships as well) to see how the judges performed so that improvements can be made for future events, because accurate judging is so important especially in events that can change people's life. However, the information gained from reviewing such tapes is not for changing ranks and should be kept confidential. Whatever done is done, the athletes should not be responsible for anything. This is to say that the judging committees do not need to screw up more innocent lives.

I don't know about you Jibberjabber, you have all the right to return your medals if you feel that is your responsibility. But I certainly will not return mines for reason posted by ETL on September 4, 2004. (see couple postings above).

Why do fans have any fault? Fans are just fans, they will support Paul Hamm no matter what, just as Yang Tae-Young's fans will always stand behind Yang. I am neutral though, I am here to analyze what I know. I am wondering how many people actually read my postings anyway. Does Paul Hamm or Yang Tae-Yang ever read them?

Posted by: Kimberly at September 7, 2004 08:03 AM

To the person that mentioned the football theory. Yes, it would be like that if the Koreans had complained about it with in time limit, but since they didn't he won the medal period. If the ref were to score a field goal as 2 points instead of 3 and after the game they were to complain about it that would be ridiculous. The NFL would fine the judges and suspend them, but the game wouldn't be reversed.

Posted by: phiz at September 11, 2004 05:44 PM

It was n ot Paul's fault! Scoring was complete! It was final before they complained! HE should keep his medal! He has worked hard his whol elife for this and it was to no fault of his there is no way he should be denied the joy!!!

Posted by: marshall at September 12, 2004 03:27 AM

How hard is it for you to understand. He got a medal he didn't earn. It was an error in counting that didn't get picked up until later. It wasn't a subjective matter of opinion. It wasn't a matter of watching the contest in slow motion to catch detail. It isn't different from putting a check mark in box A rather than box B. He can keep it. He could also have done the right thing and given it to the guy who actually outscored him, but it's too late to do that today. I try to find current interviews or appearences of him, but there aren't any. Fame n ot deserved is even more fleeting, I suppose.

Posted by: Reynaldo at September 15, 2004 02:58 AM

'Outscored him' (?) I couldn't think of any one that was more deseved to win than Paul Hamm in that evening. He stole my heart and the hearts of many audiences by his final two performances. He is a true champion.

Paul had numerous appearances after the game, including in the David Letterman's shows, Jay Leno's, Today's, Gymnastic tour, and etc.

Posted by: Lang Do Sam at September 18, 2004 05:17 AM

"Paul had numerous appearances after the game, including in the David Letterman's shows, Jay Leno's, Today's, Gymnastic tour, and etc."

And then promptly went into hiding.

Posted by: Reynaldo at September 23, 2004 04:14 AM

Or he went on a vacation. Don't you think he is entitled to have a long and relaxing vacation after the Olympic?

Posted by: Lang Do Sam at September 24, 2004 09:53 AM

I believe passionatly that Paul should definatly give the gold to Yang Tae Young. I am half Korean and half American, so I think that i have a pretty unbias opinion. Sure Paul, you did great, but Yang Tae Young did better. I fully understand that the judges were the ones that messed up but you could be a true American citizen and show the Korean what us Americans are all not returning the gold, Koreans will now only think of Americans as thieves, especially since Korean people are all about respect. America has won 32 golds, where as Korea has only won nine. One gold would not affect America as it definatly would for Korea. Show Korea and the rest of the entire world how great and generous Paul Hamm is..just return the more bronze isnt bad at all when you have 31 golds to back your country up!!!

Posted by: Ashley (Seo-ra) at September 30, 2004 09:03 AM

I could not stop laughing at Ashley's comment. You are so biased for being half Korean already. You can only claim yourself unbiased if and only if you judged the matter professionally. Your nationality should not have anything to do with your judgment. It's not about the gold, it's all about playing by the rules. Your argument of the American should give up the gold to the Korean was because we already won 32 of them. How ridiculous. How many gold the US team won had nothing to do with this case. By your argument, then why do the Korean not hand over couple of their gold to the Vietnamese because they had no gold at all.

Posted by: Ha..Ha.. at October 4, 2004 04:48 AM

Hey, You guys were right, Paul is getting famous. There is a tee shirt with him at Abercrombie & Fitch. It's Paul on the still rings, in the L-position. The caption is "L is for loser."

Posted by: Reynaldo at October 16, 2004 03:11 AM

I hope that those of you who have not supported Paul Hamm (and even worse made mean-spirited comments) are eating your words right now. It is time to honor him as the champion he is. Shame on all of you who referred to him as a loser. He didn't ask for any of this.

Posted by: Lisa at October 23, 2004 04:10 AM

Eating our words for what?

Posted by: Reynaldo at October 27, 2004 10:15 AM
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