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Making Fun of (and bitching about) NBC


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#1 mabrowndog


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 08:24 AM

I figured it's about time we had a thread dedicated to this pursuit. The network is getting absofuckinglutely hammered out there.

My favorite happening so far is detailed here.

QUOTE
We are pleased to say that NBC covered Lindsey Vonn's amazing downhill run live today... on its blog.

The network won't actually show the race until tonight, of course, when everyone knows the results (which most people now do, because the NBC TV network may be the only news organization on the planet that hasn't reported them).

Anyway, thanks to Deadspin, we now know that our outrage is shared not only by the folks who keep emailing us to scream in solidarity, but by the US ski team.

US skier Jake Zamansky ridiculed the coverage on Twitter, and NBC's web site automatically posted the tweet to NBCOlympics.com:



#2 mabrowndog


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 08:36 AM

Eric Wilbur had a great blog entry Tuesday on NBC's coverage of the men's alpine skiing downhill:

QUOTE
In defending NBC's decision to tape-delay certain marquee Olympic events, such as yesterday's men's downhill, Chris McCloskey, the network's vice president of sports communications, referenced the Miracle on Ice, the United States' storied win over the USSR hockey team in 1980.

That too, was on tape delay, much like many other Olympic results since then, whether they have been on ABC, CBS, or the roundly criticized NBC for its handling of the Vancouver Winter Olympics.

Still, that was 30 years ago, a period when avoiding Olympic results during the daytime meant little more than not picking up the rotary phone or making sure the rabbit ears went a little haywire during the evening news.

Yesterday, even @NBCOlympics tweeted that Bode Miller had taken bronze in the downhill, seconds after it had happened.

QUOTE
The reason for the delay, obviously, is to maximize ratings during prime time. And so, ski racing fans were forced to seek alternative avenues to catch yesterday afternoon's race live, including web feeds from overseas, a practice McCloskey described as pirating thanks to IOC rights protections.

But really, that's not even the worst of NBC's spliced and diced downhill coverage last night, when viewers actually saw more of Mary Carillo's polar bears than they did skiers.

"You can't please everybody, but we try to serve the greater good," McCloskey said, pointing out that he received a call from a viewer who requested the network only carry the figure skating competition. Wait, they don't already?


#3 mabrowndog


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 08:52 AM

A great column by Ron Judd of the Seattle Times:

QUOTE
I did my best.

Called NBC Universal. E-mailed them. Got a guy on the phone. Struck out.

I was simply trying to make a point: Look, folks. I'm getting deluged here. Buried by e-mail, swamped with calls. Hundreds of them. All expressing outrage about NBC's coverage of the 2010 Winter Games — particularly its decision to delay every major event to West Coast viewers.

Monday, I got an e-mail back from an NBC Universal vice president for communications, based in Vancouver. Happy to chat, he said. I called him to set up a phone interview. Alas, like most people in these "communications" jobs these days, Christopher McCloskey wanted to speak only on "background" about NBC's tape-delays.

I said no, I'd like someone from NBC to answer some questions from Seattle viewers, on the record.
QUOTE
A bit later, McCloskey sent an e-mail — apparently intended to be fodder for our discussion. In it, he had clipped comments from Jay Posner, a San Diego Union-Tribune columnist, who had opined that, in essence, the public at large couldn't care less whether the Olympics were broadcast live.

One of the snips was from a column Jan. 22, in which Posner wrote: "As I've been writing for eight years now, I'm not going to get worked up about the other coverage being delayed because I think it bothers media members more than the typical Olympics viewer, especially on the West Coast, where ratings traditionally have been strong."

Reading this, it suddenly struck me: NBC Universal still doesn't get it. They think it's me.

They honestly believe their own market research, which suggests people in every market in the United States would rather watch Olympic events three to 12 hours after the fact than when they actually occur.
QUOTE
when McCloskey finally called back, he once again refused to answer basic questions about NBC's coverage without first discussing exactly what I planned to write, again "on background."

I reemphasized that the howls of protest I'm hearing are coming from viewers, unsolicited.

"I'm at the Olympics," I told McCloskey. "I can watch whatever I want, in person. I couldn't care less about what's on NBC. But I'm telling you, my readers do care. It's the hottest Olympic topic out there right now in Seattle."

He told me it's usually just the tiny, vocal minority that speaks out.


#4 mabrowndog


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 09:02 AM

Tony the Pony isn't the only Dutchman who hates NBC. Speed skater Sven Kramer won a gold medal, and was approached by a dipshit sideline reporter who had absolutely no idea who he was. Later, Kramer spoke with a reporter from his homeland, who showed the interview snippet and asked him to comment. Awesome.



#5 mabrowndog


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 09:10 AM

NBC's Vancouver ratings down 24.1% compared to SLC, and they still haven't been able to beat American Idol.

#6 mabrowndog


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 09:13 AM

Deadspin piles on

QUOTE
NBC claims that most Americans don't care if the broadcasts are live, and that's probably true. Most of them work during the day and can only watch at night, so it honestly makes no difference to them when the sports were recorded. NBC caters to those folks, because they believe the Olympics are sports for people who don't care about sports. The outrage is coming mostly from sports fans, who are obsessed enough to follow live scoreboards during the day and DVR events they can't be home for and know that sports provide enough real drama that it doesn't need to be manufactured by highlight packages. They love sports enough that they will watch imperfect coverage of pre-taped events. Why break your back making them happy?

The people NBC needs to woo aren't sports fans. They broadcast the Olympics for people who like stories about polar bears and gymnasts with rare diseases and speed skaters whose sisters have cancer. Yes, these people are out there and to justify the insane investment dollars they have to watch too. It's a mini-series that happens to have some sports in it.

However, if the "Miracle on Ice" happened today and it hadn't been available to watch live, 30 Rock would be burned to the ground and Jeff Zucker would put to sea on a barge. "You can't please everyone" isn't an excuse to not try. Set aside sports networks for sports. Partner with ESPN, Versus, and the Golf Channel if necessary, and show everything live that's possible to show live. Then later that evening, the casual, human-interest obsessed viewer can still tune in and enjoy a night of spoiler-free Olympic television. The network is giving away the results on its own website ("live blog" does not equal "live coverage", btw) so there is no justification for maintaining the surprise.

The casual fan would never notice the difference and sports fans everywhere would love them for it. It wouldn't be that hard to please everybody, if only NBC would try.


#7 mabrowndog


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 09:24 AM

The pressure builds

QUOTE
Every day, we get emails from Canadians crowing about how awesome their TV coverage is. Every day, we watch the Twitter stream cursing NBC for its tone-deafness. Every day we get steamed emails from Americans furious that a greedy corporation is coming between them and their favorite events.

And every evening, as we sit in the same room as a TV showing the highlights of events we knew the results of hours earlier (occasionally glancing up from our laptops to see whether the replay is remotely interesting), we also shake our heads at the lengths NBC goes to create the impression that all these replays are actually happening now.

"And now let's go back to Grouse Mountain for the thrilling conclusion of the Women's Snowboardcross!" the once-authentic-seeming Bob Costas will gush, as he sits in some studio with a fake fire flickering in the background.


#8 JimD

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 09:31 AM

Stephen Colbert climbing into Bob's fake fireplace last night was awesome.

For those who aren't aware, Colbert is taping the Report in Vancouver this week which will air next week. I can't wait.

#9 jk333

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 09:33 AM

It IS horrific. Was the snowboarding halfpipe even live? I don't even know. And then coverage stopped in the middle of it. WTF? I almost turned it off, there wasn't an explanation, it just stopped. But then it came back on.

And another thing, the "other" NBC stations are a pain to find, impossible. How many times have I been to MSNBC? I hadn't even heard of CNBC... and their schedules are impossible to follow.

Edited by jk333, 18 February 2010 - 09:34 AM.


#10 JimD

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 09:38 AM

I believe the halfpipe and the mens 1000 m speedskating were live last night. Not sure about the short track speedskating.

#11 Haunted


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 09:43 AM

QUOTE (jk333 @ Feb 18 2010, 09:33 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It IS horrific. Was the snowboarding halfpipe even live? I don't even know. And then coverage stopped in the middle of it. WTF? I almost turned it off, there wasn't an explanation, it just stopped. But then it came back on.

And another thing, the "other" NBC stations are a pain to find, impossible. How many times have I been to MSNBC? I hadn't even heard of CNBC... and their schedules are impossible to follow.

I don't believe they're in HD on Comcast, or at least I can't find them. I'm so glad that the US-Canada hockey game won't be in HD.

#12 mabrowndog


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 09:44 AM

QUOTE (jk333 @ Feb 18 2010, 09:33 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
And another thing, the "other" NBC stations are a pain to find, impossible. How many times have I been to MSNBC? I hadn't even heard of CNBC... and their schedules are impossible to follow.

This is but a small consolation. Click here,.

Enter your zip code and cable/satellite provider, and you'll get a grid-based layout showing the full-day schedule on all six NBC/Universal outlets. Mouse over the vertical gray bars to see what's airing in a given time slot.

#13 Maalox


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 09:47 AM

It also strikes me that in creating interest in particular athletes, NBC turns casual viewers into people who would like to see live broadcasts. Lindsey Vonn's Facebook page has gone nuts in the past week. If you like her because NBC is talking her up so much, and you get on her Facebook page, you'll read her posts about the race hours before you get to see it.

NBC may not care, as their goal may not be to grow a community of fans but to keep bringing in new converts for the duration of Vonn's 15 minutes. But the long view would seem to be that you use these network puff pieces to swell the nucleus of people who will want to watch the Sochi Olympics, and build an audience for the sport that creates better long run return on that big investment in the broadcasting rights.

#14 Maalox


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 09:51 AM

QUOTE (JimD @ Feb 18 2010, 10:38 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I believe the halfpipe and the mens 1000 m speedskating were live last night. Not sure about the short track speedskating.

Are we 100% sure that the long-track speedskating was 100% live last night? Unless Shani Davis is even faster at shedding his warmup suit than he is on the ice, there had to have been some splicing going on.

#15 The Napkin


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 10:09 AM

QUOTE (jk333 @ Feb 18 2010, 09:33 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It IS horrific. Was the snowboarding halfpipe even live? I don't even know. And then coverage stopped in the middle of it. WTF? I almost turned it off, there wasn't an explanation, it just stopped. But then it came back on.

It was live. Hence the little "LIVE" thing up in the top right of the screen. And the coverage stopped because it was the break between the 2 runs. And they said they'd be back to cover it live when it resumed.
QUOTE (jk333 @ Feb 18 2010, 09:33 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
And another thing, the "other" NBC stations are a pain to find, impossible. How many times have I been to MSNBC? I hadn't even heard of CNBC... and their schedules are impossible to follow.

Come on. There is plenty to mock NBC about but this is clearly user error. If you're too stupid to be able to find channels in 2010 it's your own damn fault.
QUOTE (Haunted @ Feb 18 2010, 09:43 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I don't believe they're in HD on Comcast, or at least I can't find them. I'm so glad that the US-Canada hockey game won't be in HD.

They are both available in HD. User error.

#16 The Napkin


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 10:13 AM

And in the spirit of the thread..
Japan Nips US


#17 The Four Peters


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 10:16 AM

QUOTE (Haunted @ Feb 18 2010, 09:43 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I don't believe they're in HD on Comcast, or at least I can't find them. I'm so glad that the US-Canada hockey game won't be in HD.

As Napkin stated, they are in HD. However, I'm absolutely amazed that the game isn't on NBC itself. Sunday night, 7pm, it's a perfect chance to show a huge USA game with a bunch of recognizable stars, for the sport that NBC FUCKING BROADCASTS DURING THE SEASON. I understand why the majority of the games are on CNBC, especially since the USA games are at 3, but USA - Canada on a Sunday night? That should 100% be on the main network.

Hockey rant over. Overall, I really haven't watched much of the main network. I've spent infinitely more time watching curling and hockey on CNBC than anything on NBC itself. The best I've seen was on Sunday afternoon, when a majority of the over-produced crap was on the backburner, and they were showing stuff like Nordic combined. I've never really watched cross-country skiing, but the anouncers were enthusiastic and informative, and the ending was incredibly dramatic. That's how it should be done.

During the week, I've found the primetime broadcasts I have watched to be disjointed and lacking in drama as a result. They don't seem to set up a lot of the events, mainly because they're pretending they're live when they really aren't. Hell I blinked and men's downhill race was done with pretty much no fanfare. I can't really put my finger on why it seems so out of whack, but I can't get engrossed in any of the obviously tape-delayed events, even if I don't know the results.

As for last night, that was great. I was watching without sound at a bar, but saw the majority of the events. The women's downhill was great, Shaun White was incredible, and the short track stuff is always entertaining. All of this was without sound. NBC needs to get out of its own way and let the athletes tell the story during the competitions. That's more entertaining than any backstory or injury report.

#18 JimD

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 10:28 AM

What makes this so frustrating is that having the Games in North America is such an opportunity to show these sports live.

The Sochi games are absolutely going to suck for TV – we’ll hear most of the results as we’re driving to work in the morning.

#19 gopats84

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 10:36 AM

Did NBC ever show Shaun White's medal ceremony last night? When they came back from a commerical right before ending the coverage at 11:30 there was a shot of him holding the green bouquet of whatever they give medal winners so I'm assuming the ceremony took place while NBC was on the air. Not that people would want to see that live or anything....

#20 Haunted


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 10:39 AM

QUOTE (The Napkin @ Feb 18 2010, 10:09 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
They are both available in HD. User error.

I just checked Comcast's channel listing, neither MSNBC nor CNBC are available in HD to me, which confirms my search through my guide on the box itself.

#21 DaughtersofDougMirabelli

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 10:41 AM

QUOTE (gopats84 @ Feb 18 2010, 10:36 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Did NBC ever show Shaun White's medal ceremony last night? When they came back from a commerical right before ending the coverage at 11:30 there was a shot of him holding the green bouquet of whatever they give medal winners so I'm assuming the ceremony took place while NBC was on the air. Not that people would want to see that live or anything....

The medal ceremony will be shown tonight during the Women's Half Pipe.

Edit: And I believe it will be live, they handed him the bouquet but not the medal (pseudo ceremony) in front of the half pipe last night.

Edited by DaughtersofDougMirabelli, 18 February 2010 - 10:42 AM.


#22 The Napkin


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:03 AM

QUOTE (Haunted @ Feb 18 2010, 10:39 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I just checked Comcast's channel listing, neither MSNBC nor CNBC are available in HD to me, which confirms my search through my guide on the box itself.

In Boston we get it on 795 and 901 if memory serves. Odd that you don't get it. And sucky.

QUOTE (DaughtersofDougMirabelli @ Feb 18 2010, 10:41 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The medal ceremony will be shown tonight during the Women's Half Pipe.
Edit: And I believe it will be live, they handed him the bouquet but not the medal (pseudo ceremony) in front of the half pipe last night.

Correct. Immediately after events they do some kind of flower ceremony and then the medal ceremonies are later in that medal plaza thingy with the flame.

#23 Haunted


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:06 AM

QUOTE (The Napkin @ Feb 18 2010, 11:03 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
In Boston we get it on 795 and 901 if memory serves. Odd that you don't get it. And sucky.

Totally! I'll look again tonight, but neither were listed on Comcast's page or my guide.

I'm fully open to the possibility that I'm just retarded, but I'm 98% sure that I'm not. In this case. wink.gif

#24 dwightinright

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:11 AM

Curling is really fun to watch and there appears to be a bunch of strategy involved, and yes, you can Google the rules, etc., but it would behoove NBC to explain a little more as were watching...

#25 Bongorific

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:16 AM

QUOTE (mabrowndog @ Feb 18 2010, 09:44 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
This is but a small consolation. Click here,.

Enter your zip code and cable/satellite provider, and you'll get a grid-based layout showing the full-day schedule on all six NBC/Universal outlets. Mouse over the vertical gray bars to see what's airing in a given time slot.

I noticed this the day before the games started as I wanted to set up my DVR for the week. What a pain in the ass that site is. You have to mouse over every hour block to see what sport is on! Would it be that hard to just list them out? Or how about sorted by sport. Click on skiing and you can see what time and channel every skiing event will be broadcast on.


#26 Doug Beerabelli


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:25 AM

I tortured myself and listend to the HERD on ESPN, talking about how they broadcast the events tape delayed because that's when the most people will/can watch it. Market research yadda yadda, ratings yadda yadda.

That's fine. But why not broadcast the event live during the day on one of the cable channels, and then do your normal thing at night? Under their theory, this won't affect ratings. It would affect their ability to go plausibly live, or create drama by attempting to withhold results for viewers. But really, do these things increase viewers, or f you removed the false drama, would that decrease viewers? Doubtful.

For me, as of now, I don't watch the main broadcast unless I see an event that's interesting. I got lucky and saw the Vonn run between commercials, but I didn't watch all the skiing. I caught some of the half pipe, but that was live. I'm going out of my way NOT to watch the broadcast. I'd rather watch Canada destroy the Swiss in women's hockey or whatever, because it's mostly uninterrupted action, than watch Bob Costas. But that's just me.

Can't get enough of the men's hockey announcing team, though. Best announcers NBC has by light years. I'm blanking on the names, which is horrible. Clement and E something (the play by play guy), who's the best in the business.

#27 The Napkin


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:26 AM

QUOTE (Bongorific @ Feb 18 2010, 11:16 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I noticed this the day before the games started as I wanted to set up my DVR for the week. What a pain in the ass that site is. You have to mouse over every hour block to see what sport is on! Would it be that hard to just list them out? Or how about sorted by sport. Click on skiing and you can see what time and channel every skiing event will be broadcast on.

Maybe try clicking the little tab that says "By sport"? User error.

#28 The Four Peters


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:27 AM

QUOTE (Doug Beerabelli @ Feb 18 2010, 11:25 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Can't get enough of the men's hockey announcing team, though. Best announcers NBC has by light years. I'm blanking on the names, which is horrible. Clement and E something (the play by play guy), who's the best in the business.

Mike "Doc" Emrick. He's outstanding.

And Millbury and Roenick are incredibly entertaining in between periods, in a "who can piss each other off the most without out realizing their own douchiness" kind of way.

#29 The Napkin


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:27 AM

QUOTE (Doug Beerabelli @ Feb 18 2010, 11:25 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Can't get enough of the men's hockey announcing team, though. Best announcers NBC has by light years. I'm blanking on the names, which is horrible. Clement and E something (the play by play guy), who's the best in the business.

Doc Emrick. And yes he is.

#30 The Four Peters


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:27 AM

QUOTE (The Napkin @ Feb 18 2010, 11:26 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Maybe try clicking the little tab that says "By sport"? User error.

People are just looking for stuff to bitch about now. Which is a shame, because NBC gives us more than enough valid material on its own.

#31 The Napkin


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:30 AM

QUOTE (The Four Peters @ Feb 18 2010, 11:27 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
People are just looking for stuff to bitch about now. Which is a shame, because NBC gives us more than enough valid material on its own.

Seriously. It's not that freaking hard. Even my mother has figured out how to use NBC's website. Which frankly is pretty good and very easy to navigate.


#32 Bongorific

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:33 AM

QUOTE (The Napkin @ Feb 18 2010, 11:26 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Maybe try clicking the little tab that says "By sport"? User error.

I don't think that tab was there before the games started. They must have listened to me rolleyes.gif

The highlight mouse over is still annoying, and I wish they would break down the prime time slots so I know when within the 4 hour block skiing would be on. I'd be more inclined to find a TV and watch the actual broadcast rather than DVR so I can fast forward through commercials and anything involving figure skating.

#33 Bongorific

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:42 AM

QUOTE (mabrowndog @ Feb 18 2010, 09:10 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
NBC's Vancouver ratings down 24.1% compared to SLC, and they still haven't been able to beat American Idol.

Kinda sad they can't beat out Idol, but SLC was on home soil and 9/11 gave it a huge boost in ratings. Those two things probably account for a lot more of the difference than the amount of live vs. taped coverage.

#34 Tony the Pony


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:43 AM

I just can't watch it on NBC. It makes me very aggressive. They really do cater to an audience with an average IQ in the single digits, and the entire NBC approach should be taken as a significant insult to any sports fan out there.

If this would have happened in Europe (where it doesn't, of course) there would have been a massive boycott just to make the point you can't fuck with your public like this and there are so many alternatives in 2010.

I'm watching the Games on Dutch TV. Or French TV. Or one of the Scandinavian channels. Even Europsport (which I'm not a big fan of). It depends on who shows what, but the Internet is your best friend.

Mark, thanks for that Sven Kramer item. That was classic. "She's crazy"

#35 Maalox


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:44 AM

QUOTE (The Napkin @ Feb 18 2010, 11:13 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
And in the spirit of the thread..
Japan Nips US

In the "opener."

#36 JimD

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 11:49 AM

QUOTE (Doug Beerabelli @ Feb 18 2010, 11:25 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I tortured myself and listend to the HERD on ESPN, talking about how they broadcast the events tape delayed because that's when the most people will/can watch it. Market research yadda yadda, ratings yadda yadda.

That's fine. But why not broadcast the event live during the day on one of the cable channels, and then do your normal thing at night? Under their theory, this won't affect ratings. It would affect their ability to go plausibly live, or create drama by attempting to withhold results for viewers. But really, do these things increase viewers, or f you removed the false drama, would that decrease viewers? Doubtful.


Agreed. I find it hard to believe that NBC wouldn’t gain viewers by showing the races live in the afternoon for the hardcore sports fans (complete with targeted commercials), then packaging the highlights for the casual viewers in prtimetime around the figure skating, personality profiles, polar bear stories and whatever live evening events (which would still draw in the sports junkies). This doesn’t seem to be rocket science. Absent any logical explanation for their programming decisions, it’s hard not to assume that NBC is guilty of corporate ‘You’ll watch what we’re showing you and you’ll like it’ hubris.

As much as the Sochi time zone differences are going to make a hash of U.S. television programming, I still hope that ABC/ESPN or someone outbids NBC for future Winter Games. I would love to see ESPN be the lead dog and use its resources to comprehensively broadcast most of the events, letting ABC handle the figure skating and a daily highlights show and otherwise not worry that it has to hog all the best events for ratings.

Edited by JimD, 18 February 2010 - 11:50 AM.


#37 mabrowndog


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 12:16 PM

QUOTE (dwightinright @ Feb 18 2010, 11:11 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Curling is really fun to watch and there appears to be a bunch of strategy involved, and yes, you can Google the rules, etc., but it would behoove NBC to explain a little more as were watching...
Hell, most of the commentary sounds as if neither of them know what the fuck is going on. I swear, it often sounds like they're describing a marbles match or tic tac toe. "What I think he wants to do is hit that one there, and move the other one a little bit but not too far, so that the one over here isn't in the way of these two while still leaving room to nick this one, but the last thing he wants to do is block the rest of them..."

Incredibly lame.


#38 Saturnian

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 12:18 PM

This is fairly minor, but I've been sufficiently annoyed that I'll pile on. During the "coverage" of the women's downhill yesterday (which was only more extensive than the men's because of the gnarly crashes they were able to show), NBC portrayed a scenario where Reisch (the German girl and last run they showed) was the final competitor by cutting to Vonn celebrating after Reisch finished in eighth place. Now, I know that, for all intents and purposes, that was the last serious threat to the gold. But to completely ignore the last 20 skiers even competed is weak, and not really in the spirit of the games.

#39 loshjott

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 12:34 PM

QUOTE (JimD @ Feb 18 2010, 09:31 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Stephen Colbert climbing into Bob's fake fireplace last night was awesome.

For those who aren't aware, Colbert is taping the Report in Vancouver this week which will air next week. I can't wait.


Why isn't Colbert broadcasting live???

#40 Bongorific

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 12:38 PM

QUOTE (loshjott @ Feb 18 2010, 12:34 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Why isn't Colbert broadcasting live???

I'm guessing paying $600 million entitles you to be the only channel broadcasting live from the games.

#41 TheStoryofYourRedRightAnkle

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 12:48 PM

The funny thing is (and this is even more true for the Summer Olympics) is that there are a likely a bunch of events going on that get no or almost no airtime whatsoever. If NBC simply resold the rights to live broadcast those events to other channels, they could make some money. Right now, every sport that goes un-televised is a complete waste.

#42 Maalox


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 12:48 PM

QUOTE (Saturnian @ Feb 18 2010, 01:18 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
This is fairly minor, but I've been sufficiently annoyed that I'll pile on. During the "coverage" of the women's downhill yesterday (which was only more extensive than the men's because of the gnarly crashes they were able to show), NBC portrayed a scenario where Reisch (the German girl and last run they showed) was the final competitor by cutting to Vonn celebrating after Reisch finished in eighth place. Now, I know that, for all intents and purposes, that was the last serious threat to the gold. But to completely ignore the last 20 skiers even competed is weak, and not really in the spirit of the games.

It really isn't, and yet it's so that we can have more feelgood stories about the spirit of the games rammed down our throats that we get yanked away after eight runs.

And Riesch was the last serious threat, but Gina Stechert and Tina Maze were still to come. Neither had good runs, but Stechert was one of the last people to beat Vonn in DH and Maze, in addition to being an absolute smokeshow, is the #5 WOMAN IN THE WORLD for Chrissakes. She has a shot to win every single race she enters. When she goes you fucking put it on TV.

#43 86spike


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 12:54 PM

The reason that NBC is bundling the top programming for the primetime slots is all about money and nothing more.

Here's why:

NBC paid out the ass for the rights and has had a hard time selling enough ads to cover even half of what they laid out. Many big corporations have slashed advertising budgets over the last year. It's a brutally bad environment for ad sales across all mediums.

So how did NBC get advertisers to commit? According to Multichannel News (broadcastings major trade publication, FYI), they guaranteed the advertisers a 14.0 ratings number. So if ratings dip below that number (which they haven't yet, but certainly could as the Games play out), NBC would conceivably have to discount the price of the ads they've sold or give out freebie ad space in the future to compensate.

So NBC is doing everything it can to make the primetime audience as big as possible, including playing almost nothing live on the West Coast. (Note: we get more live events back here than they do in Seattle, which is only a couple hours from where the Games are actually taking place)

They made this bed with the guarantee to the advertisers and now we all get to lay in it.

#44 RIrooter09

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 12:59 PM

Sheinhardt Wig must be taking a bath on this.

#45 Maalox


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 01:01 PM

QUOTE (86spike @ Feb 18 2010, 02:54 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
They made this bed with the guarantee to the advertisers and now we all get to lay in it.

If we lay in it, do we also not get to wet it?

Hmmmm.

#46 underhandtofirst


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 01:22 PM

QUOTE (Saturnian @ Feb 18 2010, 12:18 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
This is fairly minor, but I've been sufficiently annoyed that I'll pile on. During the "coverage" of the women's downhill yesterday (which was only more extensive than the men's because of the gnarly crashes they were able to show), NBC portrayed a scenario where Reisch (the German girl and last run they showed) was the final competitor by cutting to Vonn celebrating after Reisch finished in eighth place. Now, I know that, for all intents and purposes, that was the last serious threat to the gold. But to completely ignore the last 20 skiers even competed is weak, and not really in the spirit of the games.


You could pretty much tell what each skier was going to do as soon as they hit the first time check.
skier in the lead = medal winner
skier behind = crash about to happen


#47 JimD

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Posted 18 February 2010 - 01:24 PM

QUOTE (86spike @ Feb 18 2010, 12:54 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The reason that NBC is bundling the top programming for the primetime slots is all about money and nothing more.

Here's why:

NBC paid out the ass for the rights and has had a hard time selling enough ads to cover even half of what they laid out. Many big corporations have slashed advertising budgets over the last year. It's a brutally bad environment for ad sales across all mediums.

So how did NBC get advertisers to commit? According to Multichannel News (broadcastings major trade publication, FYI), they guaranteed the advertisers a 14.0 ratings number. So if ratings dip below that number (which they haven't yet, but certainly could as the Games play out), NBC would conceivably have to discount the price of the ads they've sold or give out freebie ad space in the future to compensate.

So NBC is doing everything it can to make the primetime audience as big as possible, including playing almost nothing live on the West Coast. (Note: we get more live events back here than they do in Seattle, which is only a couple hours from where the Games are actually taking place)

They made this bed with the guarantee to the advertisers and now we all get to lay in it.


It doesn’t help that these factors are coupled to an NBC management that is unoriginal, risk-averse and completely incapable of taking the long view. They are pissing away countless younger (and probably very desirable) demographics while spoon-feeding their programming to the lowest common denominator. NBC deserves its increasing irrelevance and coming demise.


#48 johnmd20


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 01:38 PM

QUOTE (Bongorific @ Feb 18 2010, 11:33 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I don't think that tab was there before the games started. They must have listened to me rolleyes.gif

The highlight mouse over is still annoying, and I wish they would break down the prime time slots so I know when within the 4 hour block skiing would be on. I'd be more inclined to find a TV and watch the actual broadcast rather than DVR so I can fast forward through commercials and anything involving figure skating.

Two things.

1) That grid is one of the few things that I'm not complaining about when it comes to NBC. It's helpful.

2) However, to your point about not separating the hours, it's because some events are more popular than others and if they separate them out, people will know when to watch the popular sports and when to skip the less popular ones. For the record, I am not justifying this strategy, I think it's disingenuous and I think the coverage by NBC has been so god awful I'm getting more enjoyment out of this thread than I have gotten watching the Olympics.

#49 86spike


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Posted 18 February 2010 - 01:46 PM

the real reason they don't break down the hourly slots ahead of time is because they want to keep the largest group of people captive the longest for that ratings guarantee.

If they said ahead of time that you would get skating from 9-10 and luge from 8:30-9 ahead of it, the audience for the luge event would likely be super small which kills them on those pesky guarantees to the advertisers.

#50 jcd0805

  • 450 posts

Posted 18 February 2010 - 01:51 PM

QUOTE (mabrowndog @ Feb 18 2010, 10:10 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
NBC's Vancouver ratings down 24.1% compared to SLC, and they still haven't been able to beat American Idol.


The coverage beat Idol last night, thanks to Vonn and White I would think.