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
    Anonymous Coward, 17 Sep 2008 @ 1:05pm

    Re: Re: Um... What?

    So you use Linux, and that is wonderful. Linux accounts for a very small percentage of computing. Again, I fail to see how the *average viewer* would have any difficulty watching the Olympics. If you cared that much, you could always run VMWare on your Linux box and do it anyway. If you don't like Silver Light, that is totally fine, that isn't my argument. My argument is that, like it or not, Silver Light was the best medium to use for these broadcasts - due to the compression and flexibility it offers. It scales much better than flash, so I'm sorry if you it left you in the dark.

    Why would you make this about not liking Microsoft? If you don't like them, then that's fine, lots of people don't like them. Just know that you're making yourself a minority, and when you're a minority you're not going to get the same level of support from the rest of the world when it comes to your computer. By support, I mean support software to help you stream mainstream events such as the Olympics.

    You're right, some people don't like the commentary. Some people don't need it. However, there are times when I'm watching new sports that I find interesting, that the commentary is helpful. It helps me understand the rules and scoring and the players. I fail to see how people not liking commentary has anything to do with this article? You're on the verge of flaming...

    Yes, you can output to a TV or a larger monitor. That is great. How many people in the world do this? The average home user does not. Half of America is still on dial-up, and I suspect the average size screen in the home right now is 17" - 19", with many not having the same capability to output as you. More people own big TVs than big monitors. That is all I was getting at. So again, I can't see how you being able to output your video to a big monitor or TV from your PC makes it harder for the average person to watch the Olympics.

    So in conclusion, a small percentage of people (Linux users) could not easily watch the Olympics online. They could however VMWare themselves a solution, or still watch on TV. Even then though, as you pointed out, you watch a whopping two events.

    Wow... You sure put me in my place.

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