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Authenticity and the X-Games

The Summer X Games have gone international -- starting with a trip to Brazil last month before arriving in Barcelona next week, and Munich in June -- and no one has cared.

Despite the fact that Extreme Sports (or X-treme Sports, if you remember the original boom), are an undeniably global phenomenon, absolutely no one cared. This is surprising, because while the summer headliners -- skateboarding and BMX -- seem distinctly American, you could win an easy bar bet searching for them in any of the three new X Games locales. That is, after all, why they bothered expanded into foreign markets. Yet, somehow, after almost 20 years of the X Games, ESPN, the self-proclaimed worldwide leader in sports, can’t seem to bring its brand of extreme sports worldwide.

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