NBC Proud That It Made It More Difficult For People To Watch The Olympics

from the really-didn't-think-this-through dept

We've already explained how screwed up NBC's Olympic coverage policy on the web turned out to be. Its use of proprietary technology and annoying restriction severely limited its online audience -- even though the company admitted that its own research found that the more people watched online, the more they watched it on TV as well. So, given all that, you have to wonder why NBC Universal's Rick Cotton is somehow claiming a "victory" in preventing other sites from showing Olympics coverage. After all, his own company admitted that online viewing didn't cannibalize TV viewing, but only encouraged more of it. By that measure, Cotton's efforts to prevent clips of the Olympics being shared elsewhere on the web actually shrunk NBC's audience. Yet, according to Cotton: "It was a great, great success." Then again, this is the same Rick Cotton who once tried to convince Congress that it had to stop movie piracy to help poor corn farmers and claimed that no one at NBC Universal could come up with a working business model for TV content without government help, so logic might not be a strong point.

Filed Under: olympics, piracy, rick cotton, web video
Companies: nbc universal


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  1. identicon
    brianh, 16 Sep 2008 @ 2:20pm

    Re:

    we have no problem with people taking our content and reposting it.

    That's because your business model isn't advertising, it's consulting. The ads on your site are sort of an after thought. But if you're main goal was site traffic, and you wanted to grow that business, you wouldn't want a bunch of other sites taking your content. Sure, you say that the sites that do it now are small and no big deal, but on the internet that can change very quickly. NBC is wanting to make their online business (which could like by their only form of entertainment in the future) a legitimate, profitable business. You can't do that if everyone takes your content and reposts it.

    Sure, the online component may drive the TV audience right now, but that isn't the idea anymore - it's to mold the online component into a legitimate business, separate from TV.

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