Day four of the FIFA World Cup of Soccer brings Italy’s first game of this World Cup. The game has been widely anticipated around Toronto. Restaurants and pubs throughout the city are packed with fans who have taken this Monday afternoon off to watch their team in its first game of this tournament. While getting a coffee in the kitchen at my downtown Toronto office space this morning, there were a few people talking about how they would love to be able to get out to a pub to enjoy the Italy VS Paraguay. For most people who cannot get out of their office space in Toronto, the reality is that they would probably watch the game on the Internet or listen over the radio.
As I am writing this blog, a fellow who has Toronto executive office space down the hall from me, just sent me an email message saying that Paraguay had just scored a goal. Neither of us are cheering for Paraguayans, but we are both planning our escape routes through city traffic, in case Italy wins. No fans back their team with a parade of flags and honking horns like the Italian fans do.
Speaking of horns, what is that buzzing you are hearing on TV? Well it seems that South Africans love their vuvuzelas. There was talk of banning the vuvuzelas, but the vuvuzelas are a horn that is an intrinsic part of South African football.
Those who are watching on television have complained that the ambient audio feed from the stadium only contains the sounds of the vuvuzelas and the natural sounds of people in the stands are drowned out. Some Television networks have said they were taking steps to minimize the noise of the vuvuzelas on its broadcasts. There are various online petitions calling for a ban of the vuvuzelas from the FIFA World Cup 2010. One Facebook group even has more than 130,000 members supporting the ban. Despite criticism from World Cup TV viewers around the globe that noise that sounds like a “swarm of bees” produced by the plastic horns, the organizers along with FIFA have said that the uniquely African soundtrack is here to stay.