I have done all that I can to avoid spoilers. I ignore Facebook, do not look at (nor enjoy) Twitter and have turned off sports talk radio. So, I still try to struggle through the 8 PM start of NBC’s lack luster coverage.
I would like to point out, I really enjoy watching the Olympics. What I dislike about their tapped delayed coverage is that you will see about 6 back-to-back portions of an event (ski cross as an example) and then about 30 or 40 minutes before they they “go back out” to Cypress mountain to show you the finals. I would rather them group things together, it would make my TiVo time more efficient. I understand why the almighty dollar dictates this type of coverage, but that doesn’t mean I have to like it.
I do have to give them props for some of their “hype” coverage, especially around the Nordic Combined events. This is a very boring event to most. But, I as a sports fan would rather have watched the entire event than the first 5 minutes of the first leg and the last 2.5 Km of the last relay leg. They skipped 2 entire legs of the relay race!
Now, onto the criticism of the online coverage. If you enjoy Hockey and Curling (which I do) than online is for you. Otherwise, the online coverage has had nothing else, at least on days I have checked. They have a disclaimer on their “live” page that states the following: “Select events are streamed live in HD on NBCOlympics.com. All Olympic events are available in HD full-event replay.” I have my filter of sports and days set to “all” and I am only seeing these 2 sports listed. Why would I want to watch a full replay in HD online, when your primetime summary show does that and I can enjoy that with my family!?
One other caveat to online viewing, you must have a valid ISP. Not that this is too much of a problem, but they make you log in to your account. This probably only affects those that are “borrowing” Wi-Fi from their neighbors. I guess this could also hurt those in coffee shops or other free access points, but I an uncertain of this.
They also say they offer DVR controls. This is only partially true as you do have to sit through the advertisements. I have yet to find a way to fast forward through the ads for Budweiser and Liberty Mutual insurance. However, I now have the desire to drink some beer and drive around.
So what path are you going to choose in 4 years from now? Offer all online live? Offer live coverage at 2 AM on your networks? I doubt I will be setting my alarm clock for the Russian games in 2014, but it would be nice to have that option!
For those of you that know me and my love of sending hate email to NBC…that trend continues.