Journalists come up with the excuse that if a public figure won't answer a question then it is pointless to press the issue. I disagree. If more journalists pressed home points like this, we might actually get some answers.
This is not about the subject matter particularly, but how England's Channel 4 reporter would not be fudged off. He was due a round of applause for his efforts, and those of you in Australia who saw the Denton interview with the retired US reporter may remember her doing something similar. Of course that I liked his voice and accent has nothing to do with it.
Well done Alex Thomson of Channel 4.
The audio is great and can be found here on August the 14th. You can read the full transcript here.
Here is a paste of the relevant part. Karen Barlow was the reporter.
ALEX THOMSON: I'm asking the IOC if they are in any way embarrassed about the manifest failure on behalf of the Chinese Government to keep their promises?
It's a very straightforward question. Are you embarrassed?
GISELLE DAVIES: We are very proud of the fact that these games are progressing with spectacular sport, spectacular sports venues, operationally running very smoothly. And that's what we're here focusing on.
ALEX THOMSON: I'm asking you whether you're embarrassed, I'm not asking about how well the Games have been run or how wonderful the venues are. Are you embarrassed?
GISELLE DAVIES: I think I've answered your question by explaining.
ALEX THOMSON: I don't think anyone in this room. I may speak, I may be stepping out of line but I don't think anybody thinks you've answered the question.
Is the IOC embarrassed about the Chinese Government not keeping those promises.
KAREN BARLOW: The journalist Alex Thomson from the British Channel 4 news had to bat away volunteers trying to take his microphone away from him.
He was left with no answer about the IOC's possible state of embarrassment.
Wang Wei from BOCOG stepped in.
WANG WEI: I think a few, a very few people come here to pick, to be critical, to dig into the small details, to find fault with that. That does not mean we are not fulfilling our promise. So I think the whole country can see how China is progressing. How China is genuinely welcoming the world to China, to enjoy everything with us.