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NBC's Live Hockey Stream: Attempt to Mollify Fans?

March 01, 2010

When the nicest thing somebody can think of to say about your Olympic coverage is that you have 'a really cool Twitter Tracker,' you probably didn't do your best covering the Olympics.
We've bashed NBC's coverage of the Olympics a fair bit in this space, but we want you all to know that the reason we've done so to this amount is because we didn’t have more space.

Mashable puts their finger on it when they say that 'in addition to not airing events live to people on the West Coast, the network has made some downright bizarre decisions about what events to stream online at'
Yes, they streamed America's 6-1 demolition of Finland, but even there, Mashable noted, 'NBC’s embrace of live event-streaming has been less than wholehearted, citing NewTeeVee's caustic comment that “Despite touting more than 835 hours of live video from the Winter Games, less than half of that will be actually be streamed live online.”
In addition to the hammering NBC has taken in the media, to which we're happy to add our whacks here and there, the network got another headache in the mail when they received a letter from the top senator on antitrust matters, according to Reuters (News - Alert), expressing concern that 'some of its Internet coverage of the Winter Olympics is limited to pay television subscribers.'
Wisconsin Senator Herb Kohl's letter said to see some of the Olympic coverage on the site, users 'must first register with the site after validating a subscription with 'your cable, satellite or IPTV (News - Alert) provider'.'
'I fear that this practice of locking up certain content only for pay-TV subscribers may be a preview of what is to come with respect to TV programming shown on the Internet,' Reuters reports Kohl writing to NBC President Jeff Zucker, 'particularly in the context of the proposed Comcast/NBC Universal (News - Alert) merger.'
The implied threat here is hard to miss: I might see what I can do about that merger if I really feel like it, Zucker.

David Sims is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of David’s articles, please visit his columnist page. He also blogs for TMCnet here.

Edited by Amy Tierney