Why NOlympics is Raising Funds for A Market Survey

NOlympics LA, a growing coalition of dozens of local organizations opposing the controversial LA 2024 2028 bid, needs funds for conducting independent market surveys gauging public interest, knowledge, and opinion about hosting the 2028 Olympic Games in Los Angeles.

We’re doing this because Angelenos have effectively been denied a voice in the entire decision-making process to bring the Games to our city. No independent research has been conducted to date regarding the 2024 or 2028 LA Olympic bid, which is incredibly unusual. For example, WBUR in Boston is an outlet which consistently conducted polls during the Boston 2024 bidding process. In fact, WBUR was still polling about the Boston bid in 2017, even though their bid has been dead for over two years.

The LA bid committee and IOC will tell you about the polls they’ve financed as if they represent conclusive evidence that Angelenos want the Olympics. The truth is that only two polls and one short survey have been conducted over the last two years, which is insultingly paltry and insufficient in light of the long-term impact the Games will have on our city. We’ve seen from previous Olympics and other opposition movements around the world that the more people are asked what they think about the Games, the more public opinion plummets. We don’t believe the bid committee in good faith solicited sufficient or thorough feedback from the public, specifically from the populations who would be at the most risk, which was also glaringly obvious during the City Council hearings when the public was denied comment during voting. It is in their best interest not to ask what people think about the Games, if they want them here, and what issues are more pressing to them than bringing a mega-event to our city.

Local media outlets have been taking polls financed by the bid committee and IOC at face value without conducting their own. We understand that media outlets have been defunded significantly in this century, but we demand more polling going to local issues, not just issues of national or local electoral politics. We can’t wait for the local media, which is getting smaller by the week, to do the crucial work of talking to the public and learning about their concerns.

We need to step up and start pushing back. Conducting independent research will allow us to achieve a number of important strategic goals for our campaign and coalition:

  • Educate the public about concerns around the Olympics - Polling and surveys don’t just collect information; they are also a communications tool. Asking questions strategically will also prompt survey respondents to think about the Olympics and their potential impact in a way that they have not been asked to before, and to start asking questions of their own. For example, someone taking the survey might not know that the Olympics will create a unified command between DHS and LAPD, but we can ask questions that point to this fact and ask respondents how they feel about it.

  • Build skepticism around bid committee’s claims of widespread support - Right now, the bid committee and IOC can claim that all polls that have been conducted to date show overwhelmingly strong support. This is technically true, because only three polls have been conducted. More polls and surveys with more specific questions will yield very different results, and will take away this talking point, undermine their credibility, and give people leverage to push back on this idea of widespread support.

  • Put pressure on local media to conduct polls - Local media is in a very vulnerable and largely defunded state right now, and need very specific incentives to conduct costly polls, especially if they’re not sure as to whether those polls will provide newsworthy information. Providing them with viable survey data that shows a different story than the one painted by the bid committee will give them the ability and rationale to conduct their own polls with confidence and urgency.

  • Drive people to our website and petition - With an online survey, we will have the option of including a question that asks people to opt-in to receiving more information about our campaign and coalition. For those who respond with interest, we can also immediately share our website and petition links.

  • Inform future demands - Unlike the Olympics, the future of our campaign and any specific goals we work towards are informed by the people of Los Angeles and their pressing needs. Conducting our own polls and surveys will allow us to hear directly from people in LA and California about what their fears and hopes are, and ensure that our work is directly responsive to that.

Here are two ways to support the campaign:

  • Donate directly to our Venmo account in any amount you wish (you can still receive rewards this way):
    username: nolympicsla

Thank you,

NOlympics LA