NBC's Love/Hate Affair With YouTube Firmly In The Hate Position

from the bye-bye-youtube dept

Perhaps no company has had more of a love-hate affair with YouTube than NBC. On practically a weekly basis over the past year or so it seems like NBC's official position on YouTube switches back and forth. First, they hated YouTube because the SNL Andy Samberg video "Lazy Sunday" was widely available on it, requiring NBC's lawyers to demand it get taken down. This seemed odd to us, as it was a great promotional vehicle for Saturday Night Live. And, in fact, for a little while, it seemed that NBC agreed, as they set up an official NBC channel on YouTube where they released lots of content, including newer Samberg videos. NBC execs started to talk about how great YouTube was for promotional purposes and some even hoped that NBC would put more content on YouTube. Of course, then Jeff Zucker took over, and one of his first public statements involved slamming YouTube even as his executives were talking about how useful a tool it was. NBC soon filed an amicus brief against YouTube in a lawsuit against the company and, more recently, have been speaking out against the company. Perhaps this isn't too surprising, as the company has teamed up with News Corp in a weak attempt to create its own online video property.

So, with that flip-flopping in mind, it should come as little surprise that NBC has now completely shut down its official channel on YouTube according to Valleywag. This is pretty weak, though, as many people who enjoyed getting NBC content that way now have had that rug pulled out from under them. NBC still seems to be under the entirely wrong belief that people will come to them. People want to get content however it's convenient. That means offering it in a variety of places and a variety of formats so that people are more likely to view the content. Taking away options doesn't help things, it just pisses off more fans.
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Filed Under: tv, videos, youtube
Companies: google, nbc

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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Oct 2007 @ 3:09pm

    People still watch the crap that NBC makes? Meh, they're all the same. Until Big Business either embraces the internet fully, or gets passed by it, this same thing is going to keep happening over and over.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    Monarch, 22 Oct 2007 @ 3:36pm

    At least NBC's website that allows you to watch shows after they've aired, works for any OS with Flash. Has a lot of annoying commercials at inopportune commercial breaks though.

    With ABC, you need select versions of Windows with the most current update and WGA. Sorry, ABC is more back asswards than NBC. Don't know about CBS, do they even have an online site to view their shows?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Oct 2007 @ 4:53pm

    CBS has an online site to view shows, its like www.cbs.com/intertube or something like that. CBS seems to be fairly net friendly, but the player they use sucks. They do some tv shows for their interent site only as well. The net only stuff isn't the greatest things since sliced bread, but its nice to see a company at least experimenting with it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Oct 2007 @ 5:07pm

    Oh, and the ABC site for watching shows won't accept linux as a valid OS. I could spoof it, but not worth effort just to watch tv. The CW has the same issue. Absolutely silly since its its a flash player, and thus cross platform. They just don't want an OS other than Windows or Mac to use it because we are "hackers".

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    darkbhudda, 22 Oct 2007 @ 5:23pm

    Some of those network sites are impossible to navigate. Then once you find the clip you want it displays an ad, before even trying to play the file. Then it has a problem with the file, probably because they didn't expect people to use their site, and reloads it but not before playing the same ad which was not funny the first 500 times. After a few attempts you give up and go to Youtube or one of those other sites which actually work.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. identicon
    Aard88, 22 Oct 2007 @ 8:02pm


    CBS has a lot of content on Joost, when it works...

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. identicon
    Iron Chef, 22 Oct 2007 @ 10:08pm

    Poor NBC... Not listening...

    I recently went to nbcuniversal.com to share my disgust with their pullout on Apple. I was prompted to take a survey, and I let them know what I thought...

    But was asked to fill out a survey, which distracted me. The survey didn't properly ask the questions that were necessary to understand my position.

    The email I drafted for NBC UNIVERSAL is below.


    I'm real sorry to hear that your no longer going to be on iTunes. Your content was the best, but I realize that your Senior Management is making some decisions that is not win-win-win situation... Especially for me, the customer.

    Steve Jobs really thought the world of you. He gave three keynotes featuring NBC content. Steve is not one to forget and forgive-- He gives chances. If you check out his last keynote, he made a genuine plea for NBC while demoing the new Create Your Own Ringtones.. I believe he said "That's what plays when NBC calls".

    From my side--
    I typically make 3 roundtrip flights a month, sometimes four. Every time I had folks next to me ask about the video iPod-- they didn't realize that the iPod was so easy to use, content was so accessable, and the battery would last for a whole trip (Even on that trip from Seattle to Tampa) on a single charge. It was always great pulling out the iPod video of my shirt pocket during cross country airline trips and watch episodes of The Office, Mad Money with Jim Cramer (CNBC), 30 Rock, Heros and the occasional CSI. (Most recommended by Steve's keynotes.)

    While folks around me would struggle with portable DVD players, I effortlessly was able to watch full shows and keep up with what I missed the week before.

    Your potential customers saw the content I was playing and knew that iPod was something special. I always recommended purchasing content thru iTunes, and getting the iPod from CostCo (Another company that consistently ranked extremely high in University of Michigan's American Customer Satisfaction Index)

    To see that you've moved to Amazon is something of a surprise. I can look out my window and see their building, and while I could consider purchasing a Zune, I won't. I tried Zune in the past, it just doesn't work for me.

    I already have well over $7,000 in content invested in iTunes in the form of audio and video content. I'm now on my 4th iPod, and have been considering a iPod Phone for the last 3 months.

    I thought NBC of all companies, would be in it for the long haul, especially when Steve stood right behind you.

    I guess I have to look forward to purchasing full seasons of CBS and FOX content.

    I'd love to have you back...

    ~~A fan being forced to turn the (virtual) channel.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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