August 20, 2014 14:35 UTC

In the News

Americans Making Final Preparations for Super Bowl Sunday

Millions are expected to watch the Baltimore Ravens battle the San Francisco 49ers for the professional football championship | IN THE NEWS

The helmets of the San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens sit beside the Vince Lombardi trophy before a press conference ahead of the NFL's Super Bowl XLVII in New Orleans, Louisiana, Feb. 1, 2013.
The helmets of the San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens sit beside the Vince Lombardi trophy before a press conference ahead of the NFL's Super Bowl XLVII in New Orleans, Louisiana, Feb. 1, 2013.

Multimedia

Play or download an MP3 of this story
From VOA Learning English, this is IN THE NEWS in Special English.
 
This Sunday, people around the world will witness two teams as they battle for the championship of American professional football. The Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers are in New Orleans, Louisiana, to prepare for the 47th Super Bowl. Over one hundred million people are expected to watch the game on television, with computers or other devices.
 
The Ravens were formed in 1996 when the owner of the Cleveland Browns decided to move his team to Baltimore, Maryland. In 2001, the Ravens won their only Super Bowl game. The 49ers were established in 1946 as a member of the All-American Football conference. The team joined the National Football League in 1950.
 
They have won five Super Bowl championships. 
 
VOA reporter Jim Stevenson will be going to the game on Sunday.
 
“This is a really good match up. Most people thought that the 49ers were one of the favorites to reach the super bowl. They have an exceptional defense, explosive offense. Baltimore has always been known for its defense, very tough, physical, hard hitting team.”  
 
This Super Bowl game is unusual because the head coaches of the two teams are brothers. Baltimore’s John Harbaugh is the older of the two. Younger brother Jim formerly played for several professional teams, including the Ravens. He was a college football coach before moving to the NFL last year to lead the 49ers. 
 
The Super Bowl is not only a popular event to watch, but it also increases economic activity in the United States. Many people hold Super Bowl parties, spending lots of money on food, drinks and activities. Officials estimate the game will bring $434 million to the Louisiana economy and increase the number of visitors to the state.
 
A major part of the economic activity is coming from large companies that plan to advertise their products on television during ‘commercial’ breaks. Companies are spending up to $4 million for a single 30 second advertisement. But businesses would not spend this much money if they did not think it would lead to increased sales. The head of Volkswagen America told the Reuters news agency that the company’s recent Super Bowl ads have resulted in a doubling in the size of its business. 
 
This year, companies are recognizing the importance of social media. They know that many people will not only be watching the television broadcast, but will be near their computer or mobile phone. Coca Cola wants people to take part in its advertising. On Sunday, the company will be asking viewers to vote in an online competition between three groups competing for a Coke. Pepsi and Toyota are planning to use personal photographs in their ads. 
 
In the past, Super Bowl ads were closely-guarded secrets. But over the past few years, more and more companies have been making their ads public before the game. This year more than 20 companies have already released their ads. However, not everyone enjoys seeing the ads early. Some people like to be surprised. Because advertising during the Super Bowl is just as competitive as the game itself, some companies could change their ads at the very last minute.  
 
For those of you planning to watch the game, which team do you think will win? You can tell us on Facebook, Twitter or send a comment.

Correction: An earlier version of this article mistakenly reported the cost of an advertisement during the Super Bowl was $400 million. In fact, it is about $4 million.
This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Learn with The News

  • Founders Chef Ype Von Hengst (right  and Robert Giaimo during construction of the first Silver Diner in 1989. (Courtesy of Silver Diner)

    Audio Diners Increase Business with Healthy Food

    Restaurants called “diners” can be found throughout the United States. They make simple, low-cost food. But traditional diner food is often unhealthy. One group of diners is cooking healthier food for their customers and, surprisingly, they love it. More

  • Edie Mukiibi, the new vice president of Slow Food International, at a school garden he helped create in Mukono, Uganda, July 22, 2014. (Hilary Heuler/VOA)

    Audio Learning to Grow Traditional Foods in Uganda

    The "slow food" movement is growing in the Western world, but not in Africa. Group works to help people in Uganda and other countries grow local, healthy food. | Agriculture Report More

  • A man is lead away after being detained by police. Ferguson, Missouri, Aug. 18, 2014.

    Audio More Than 70 Arrested in Missouri Protests

    Police arrested more than 70 protestors and reporters Monday night and early Tuesday in the central U.S. town of Ferguson, Missouri. The demonstrators were protesting the shooting of an unarmed black teenager by a white police officer on August 9. More

  • Demonstrators stand in the middle of West Florissant as they react to tear gas fired by police during ongoing protests in reaction to the shooting of teenager Michael Brown, in Ferguson, Missouri, August 18, 2014. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson (UNITED STATES - Ta

    Audio Police Actions Cause Anger

    Many Americans are angry about the police use of military practices and equipment, like rubber bullets and tear gas, against protestors in Ferguson, Missouri and New York City. Protests happened after the recent deaths of unarmed civilians when they clashed with police officers. More

  • FILE - A Lowland Gorilla is seen in the Kahuzi-Biega National Park in South Kivu, eastern Democratic Republic of Congo.

    Audio Ebola Kills More Than Humans

    The recent outbreak of the Ebola virus has taken more than 1,000 human lives in West Africa. But it is also killed many endangered western lowland gorillas. More

Featured Stories

  • sleep

    While You Sleep, Your Brain Works

    While we sleep, our brains are doing much more than getting ready for the next day. Researchers at the University of Rochester found that the brain may be busy cleaning house -- cleaning out harmful waste materials. More

  • Biltmore Outdoor

    Audio Biltmore Estate Takes Visitors Back in Time

    The huge home in North Carolina was built at the end of the 1800s. The man who owned the Biltmore Estate in North Carolina was George Vanderbilt. Biltmore has 250 rooms and the house is now open to the public. | This Is America More

  • Audio English at the Movies: Robin Williams

    Robin Williams was a humorist and a highly-trained actor. We look at some of his most famous movie lines from a Learning English angle | American Mosaic More

  • Audio From Huge to Extra Small, at New York City Museum

    Currently the Queens Museum is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the New York World's Fair. The museum show is called “Bringing the World Into the World.” It includes a huge model of New York City that was made for the fair. | American Mosaic More

  • Some considered John Brown a hero.

    Audio John Brown Raids Harpers Ferry

    In October of 1859, a group of anti-slavery extremists attacked the town of Harpers Ferry. Harpers Ferry was part of Virginia then; today it is located in West Virginia. A man named John Brown led the attack. His group seized a gun factory and a center where the government kept military equipment. More

Practice Your Writing

Confessions of an English Learner BlogConfessions of an English Learner Blog

Tell us About Our Programs