As other people here said this wasn´t a typical audince for figure skating competition. The audince didn´t come to see skating in general, people came to see how Russia was going to get more medals. It is like soccer or ice hockey - you don´t applaud when the opposite team scores.
As I said, I have heard boos and hisses and whistles watching broadcasts from every other country. I never heard a single disrespectful noise while watching the Olympics from Russia.
I merged the old Russian audiences thread with this current one. In the older thread, there was some discussion of American audience at the 2003 Worlds. At the time I wrote up my experience as an audience member. It led to a discussion of figure skating audiences. In case anyone is interested, here's the thread:
Here are some things I'd like to clarify about the Russian audience in Sochi:
1) I agree that most of the crowd were not real figure skating fans, people have arrived from all over the country to cheer for their skaters holding Russian flags with the names of their cities - this is a typical football or hockey crowd and they were behaving as football fans: shouting, supporting Russian skaters whenever it was appropriate or not
2) Some of them might not even know the names of figure skaters or the elements so they couldn't appreciate some really good skates. Out of Non-Russian skaters the biggest support was given to Carolina, Brian (as the veterans) and probably to some Japanese skaters.
3) American or Canadian skaters are always met carefully, as well as Russian skaters are met in North America (I can still remember 2013 World Championship, there was awkward silence when any Russian skater was about to take the ice). Btw Julia stated that during Skate Canada 2013 warm-up the audience cheered Gracie, Akiko but when her name was pronounced there was complete silence
4) If you want to see the most knowledgable Russian audience you'd better come to Moscow, Cup of Russia (I'm not talking about the scores here). These people are not as the crowd in Sochi. They are really interested and supportive, at least I have noticed that.
5) The fact that the crowd cheered when smb was falling or making mistakes is wrong. People are cheering not because they are happy! It's a way to support the skater. I don't know about other audiences but in Russia they always do that! And if a skater has a heavy fall it's almost obligatory to clap right until the end of the routine.
6) Finally it's the Olympic Games! I guess the people are under pressure to cheer for Russia, because it's not only figure skating rivalry but also medal rivalry overall. The more medals - the better. Russia has its emperor ambitions, it never can be enough + the revenge for other Olympic losses like Slutskaya for ex. (many people are still angry)
And please don't write anything about Putin buying medals or whatever! He has nothing to do with figure skating (he came to see team event because he thought he had to as the President, probably to show the world that figure skating is the vital sport for Russia). Apart from the Olympics Putin doesn't care about FS. It's all again his ambitions and trying to show the world that he's knowledgable in the sport which looks really funny as he doesn't really enjoy it and doesn't care much.
^ Yes that happened a lot to, thank you for pointing out.