So did the Olympics help China's global reputation?
Probably on some levels. But...
If you had asked people a month ago what they thought of China, many would have said, "Ummm... they make a lot of cheap stuff."
Ask most people what they think of China today and you'll hear them complain about lip synced anthems and underage gymnasts.
And the media have told as many stories of censorship, human rights abuses, Chinese arms sales to Sudan, and China's official misinformation campaigns as they did stories on the Great Wall or local cuisine.
If the former kind of media heat continues, the Olympics certainly will have helped China's global reputation--by weakening it.