Getting Paid: Phelps Reportedly Earns 200k For Facebook Live Posts

In the lead-up both the U.S. Olympic Swimming Trials and the 2016 Olympic Games, swim fans have been treated to several Facebook Live sessions held by 22-time Olympic medalist Michael Phelps.

Through his multiple live videos, we’ve been able to go on a Phelps-guided Olympic Training Center tour, eat a meal with the 18-time gold medalist, and spend part of the new Dad’s first Father’s Day with the athlete as he published a live video with baby Boomer and fiancée Nicole last Sunday, June 19th.

As admirers of Phelps, most viewers of his videos would like to altruistically think the 30-year-old is producing and posting them to keep fans involved and connected with the athlete. While that may still be the case, the Wall Street Journal reveals that there is also a strong monetary motive behind the videos.

Per an article published in WSJ today, Phelps is listed among 140 media companies and celebrities hired by Facebook, Inc to create videos for its relatively new live-streaming service. The goal is to utilize the well-known businesses and personalities in an effort to rake in advertising dollars via increased engagement with Facebook’s estimated 1.65 billion monthly users.

Phelps reportedly will reap $200,000 from the arrangement, a nice paycheck for not having to leave the couch. NFL quarterback Russell Wilson and chef Gordon Ramsey reportedly receive the same amount, which is small change compared to the $600,000 comedian Kevin Hart earn from his live streaming.

In terms of businesses, the highest paid publisher is BuzzFeed, who is slated to receive $3.05 million for live broadcasting between March 2016 and March 2017.

The fact Phelps gets a paycheck for his Facebook posts may dull the shine of finally getting a glimpse into the steely competitor who has dominated United States’ swimming for more than a dozen years. But, that doesn’t mean gaining insight into what makes the most decorated Olympian of all time tick isn’t worth it.

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Haha “dull the shine”. You couldn’t have said it any better. Him getting paid does make it a little less genuine and personal. But ultimately who cares, I’m sure we all would do the same.


He seems very genuine and personal as is. He has usually seemed to always be very genuine with what he does, even if there is a large paycheck behind it. Lately it’s been a bit more blatant advertising (i.e. whatever beef jerky company sponsers him now), but even then it’s not bad at all. I think its fun hearing him talk about his day-to-day life and answer fan questions, so i really don’t care if he makes a quick buck from it.


too bad, thought it was genuine


He does care about his fans. He wouldn’t do it otherwise and why do I say that? Because he looks genuinely happy doing the live broadcasts. Besides he wouldn’t jeopardize the training needed to prepare for the Olympics for $200K. Sharing glimpses of his life with his fans allows the fans to rally behind him and we, the fans, love it. In the end it also serves as a business opportunity with other potential sponsors and there is nothing wrong with wanting to secure a strong financial future for his family.


Phelps does not care about his fans xD, have you actually met him? he once ignored me and walked by like nothing happened:)


I met him, got and some people were waiting on a balcony, only 6 including me. And they waved it him, and he pointed them to meet him somewhere else. He signed autographs, including mine, I said, Thank you a lot, he gave me a smile, a thumbs up, and a your welcome.


It could have been no problem, it was inaudible.


They offered him a million if he could tie Spitz, doesn’t mean he wouldn’t do it if the offer weren’t there!

About Loretta Race

Loretta Race

After 16 years at a Fortune 1000 financial company, long-time swimmer Retta Race decided to change lanes and pursue her sporting passion. She currently is Coach for the Northern KY Swordfish Masters, a team she started up in December 2013, while also offering private coaching. Retta is also an MBA …

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