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NBC To Live Stream Olympics Event

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the more-please dept.

186

An anonymous reader writes "According to Broadcasting Cable, NBC is going to stream the gold medal Men's hockey game live on the NBC Olympics web site. This is in preparation for (hopefully) many more live feeds throughout the year. The video stream will have DRM and IP protection to attempt to limit access to residents of the US, like the other event video on the site. With the stream served by Akamai's CDN, it will be interesting to see if it can sustain the load. The game starts around 8:00am EST on Sunday, Feb 26 if you are interested in checking it out."

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186 comments

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Server Load? (1)

dominick (550229) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802233)

They may be able to sustain the server load of the entire U.S.

but I doubt they can sustain the SLASHDOT EFFECT!!!

It's like shooting fish in a barrell. Good job guys!

Typo (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802234)

metal?

Medal Not Metal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802237)

It's not hard people. You can't rely on spell check for all your editing.

Re:Medal Not Metal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802408)

Who says they even use spell check at all??

Re:Medal Not Metal (2, Funny)

grub (11606) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802445)


It's the Winter Olympics. The fun is watching them getting their tongues stuck to their metals.

Someone set us up the games!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802852)

All your metal are belong to US!

Gold Metal!? (0, Troll)

paulproteus (112149) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802240)

I didn't know they had that event in the Winter olympics!

Re:Gold Metal!? (1)

mobby_6kl (668092) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802435)

Gold Metal? That's probably how the kids these days refer to the NWOBHM.

METAL ? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802242)

Gold METAL ?

metal (0, Troll)

benasselstine (764316) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802243)

medal this is as bad as when i saw "died coke" on a menu.

Re:metal (1)

distributed (714952) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802654)

Mebbe Zonk is a metal fan... btw Why isn't anyone fixing it ?

This sounds familiar... (1)

Toba82 (871257) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802244)

Didn't the previous story go over this? Something about Akamai being unable to handle too much load?

http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=06/02/25/211521 8 [slashdot.org]

Yeah, I know that Cringley didn't actually mention Akamai.

Re:This sounds familiar... (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802509)

Funny that Zonk Greenlighted both stories :op

It's okay Zonk, /. is fickle. We'll thank you tomorrow.

Re:This sounds familiar... (1)

distributed (714952) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802645)

This should be one of the fewer (or maybe the only) instance of a live video feed site beeing slashdotted by appointment.
Sad that Zonk wanted to give them a fair notice... well.. Bring lets 'em down !! hee haaa haaaw !!

In other news... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802254)

Linux is STILL for fags.

Re:In other news... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802404)

You're just jealous.

Give up already NBC (1)

elister (898073) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802266)

You failed at the olympics coverage! Offering a carrot in the form of an internet stream just shows how much you suck at covering these events.

Jack, meet ass. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802325)

Jack, meet ass. His name is "elister" and he just dicouvered Slashdot!

Re:Give up already NBC (1)

SeeMyNuts! (955740) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802611)

Events at the Olympics? Oh, that sports stuff? I thought that was just there to break up the commercials!

Re:Give up already NBC (1)

Basehart (633304) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802658)

"Events at the Olympics? Oh, that sports stuff? I thought that was just there to break up the commercials!"

I suffered so much mental anguish during the US TV coverage of the last Olympics that I vowed never to watch it again.

To see so many live events interrupted by human interest vignettes featuring US athletes doing day to day stuff in hometown America was horrific beyond belief.

At one point I was watching a pole vaulting event only to suddenly find myself watching the life story of one of the US team members. By the time it had finished the event was concluded and then exactly the same thing happened during the next event.

I was able to catch quite a bit of the actual sporting events this year because we are lucky enough to get CBC here in Seattle, but whenever I see Bob Costas sat in front of a big fire with an athlete I break out into a sweat.

Re:Give up already NBC (1)

iwsnet (946715) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802666)

8 am on a Sunday morning. Wow, that's early!!

What about linux? (1)

blaksaga (720779) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802271)

So can I assume that with DRM protection I won't be able to view it on linux?

Re:What about linux? (1)

Darth Maul (19860) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802413)

Yes, that's a valid assumption. It should be obvious to everyone by now that DRM is more about platform lock-in than really keeping pirates at bay.

This is what really scares me about DRM, tiered internet, and pretty much every other tech-related control scheme we've been reading about lately. In the end, it's about making sure you have a "trusted" software/hardware platform. So much for Linux tech hobbyists like myself. You want to write your own PVR? Illegal. Convert video content that you bought to another format? No way. "But, please take a look at our Approved Device (TM). Just buy that and don't worry about having control; it's just confusing."

Re:What about linux? (1)

Ilgaz (86384) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802492)

They could use a serious, multiplatform media solution like Real (Helix) Server and broadcast happily with DRM. At least it has clients for all platforms.

You may not like DRM but compatibility is not the issue here. Mplayer etc. are third party hacks. Windows Media for Mac never worked right (in full function, plugin etc), so the format "hates" anyone not using windows.

If they used Real format, they could even stream/make money from Cell Phones and PDAs, their loss... I hope the sponsor money from Intel and Microsoft will cover the costs.

(btw you gotta have Intel processor for Full Screen, others can't do it!)

Re:What about linux? (1)

bhtooefr (649901) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802498)

OK, what about my BeBox and Amiga? (note: I don't actually have either one, just posing a theoretical question)

Re:What about linux? (2, Interesting)

Ilgaz (86384) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802521)

I know you are joking but in fact BeOS has Realplayer G2, I am not sure they coded the newer codecs for "auto update" though...

Live (except on West Coast) (1)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802275)

It should be noted that the gold medal game will also be broadcast by the main NBC network live at 8am ET to affiliates in the Eastern and Central time zones. The game will be seen at 8am local time in the Mountain and Pacific time zones.

99% of the TVs in America has access to an NBC affiliate, and this web stream is designed not to be viewable outside the USA, so it's kinda questionable just who this stream is aimed at. West coasters who can't wait out a three hour tape delay and want to see the game at 5am PT? People who have an office job who are working at 8am ET on a Sunday morning?

Re:Live (except on West Coast) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802299)

Since it's so early in the morning, they're probably testing out streaming on a light load, and I'm sure that they're just as interested as you are to find out what kind of people where will watch it.

Re:Live (except on West Coast) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802367)

It seems to be aimed at me... a Swede on the west coast who does have to be at work at 8am. I am sure there are a whole bunch of us - oh, maybe three or four. Add a couple more for the Finns on the west coast who also have to be at work at 8am on a Sunday. Thanks NBC! :)

Re:Live (except on West Coast) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802446)

This is just going to be a test of the slashdot comment. Please ignore and excuse me.

Re:Live (except on West Coast) (2, Interesting)

NeMon'ess (160583) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802486)

I don't watch the olympics because I don't have cable and can't watch the coverage live. It feels like bullshit having NBC package up stories and events, complete with the backgrounds of the athletes, when they already know full-well who actually won. They expect me to watch their stories set to swooning music, and then see that athlete lose, even though that happened 5 to 12 hours ago. The worst as I remember it was in Sydney and Nagano when the coverage was tape delayed on the west coast about 18 hours. Which is truly screwed up because 8pm Pacific time is 1 or 2pm in Australia or Japan. NBC could've given live events prime-time coverage on the West, and East coasts, but waited a day to package them. Besides, then maybe some of the viewers would realize how stupid it is to watch day old events.

Online radios are still broadcasting! (1)

MavEtJu (241979) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802278)

Two years ago the online radio stations I normally listen to (Dutch Radio 1 and Australian ABC Radio National / News Radio) went off-line during the Olympics because the news reports on it contained news and snippets of the Olypmic games and weren't allowed to be broadcasted outside the country itself and thus were turned off.

This year, Olympic games again and I'm still listening to the three stations mentioned earlier. Is this a change of policy of the Olympic council or doesn't it matter too much for the winter olYmpics? Anybody with any insight in this?

Who's watching the olympics? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802280)

Nobody!
I rather watch a college party hurling contest than an olympic curling contest. Image a rich white boy sliding rocks across the ice while more rich white boys sweep imaginary snow out of it's path. My remote has been programed to automatically skip NBC for the past week.

Re:Who's watching the olympics? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802302)

Imagine an anonymous asshole knowing the difference between ITS and IT'S. That should be an Olympic event all by itself. And they're not sweeping imaginary snow, they're melting the ice to let the rock slide better.

Re:Who's watching the olympics? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802303)

Wow, thanks for your insightful comment. Those of us that enjoy the sports represented in the Winter Games really give a damn that you don't.

Re:Who's watching the olympics? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802750)

And those of us who have been watching the behavior of the IOC and various governments lately don't give a fuck that you enjoy the sports.

FUCK THE OLYMPICS!!!

Re:Who's watching the olympics? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802541)

Don't know about you, but I sorta like watching those girl skaters. I think it's hard coded DNA or something...

Been there, done that with Auntie... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802304)

The BBC [bbc.co.uk] have been doing this for UK residents for the duration of the Olympics - not just Ice Hockey (which I have been following closely - go Niittymäki!), but a host of other sports that involve sliding too.

It's a Real Video stream, and it works pretty well; I've only had a few occasions where congestion has killed it. The only other problem is that quite often the compression they're using removes the puck from the image. Quite amusing :)

NBC's olympic coverage sucks ass (2, Insightful)

Clockwurk (577966) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802306)

And its no surprise since they have exclusive broadcast rights in the US. Rather than show most of the events, they hand pick a small few where the US is supposed to win and then cover them. Maybe I'm in the minority, but I'd much rather watch the biathlon or curling or x-country skiing than sit through another "spirit of the games" hype session (this olympian has battled through cancer, loss of family, broken leg, blah blah blah). Every olympian works hard and overcomes personal obstacles on their way to the games, its nothing special.

Snowboarding and freestyle skiing shouldn't be olympic sports; save that shit for the x-games. When I'm watching the Olympic games, I should never hear a commentator say "he got sick air on that phat run".

The only thing that has made these games less than absolute shit is the fact that I get CBC (hoser tv), and they actually cover the games, not the hype (Bode Miller needs to change his name to Sir Chokesalot)

Re:NBC's olympic coverage sucks ass (1)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802327)

NBC proper didn't cover curling at all, but on cable USA covered live in early mornings just about as many early round matches as possible, while CNBC had a daily 5pm ET three-hour block that was dedicated entirely to curling... showing most of the Team USA matches and selected other matches.

Bottom line: Every event in the Olympics got TV coverage, you just needed to know which one of NBC's cable networks to look on.

Re:NBC's olympic coverage sucks ass (1)

tealover (187148) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802337)

Snowboarding shouldn't be in the olympics but curling should ?

Are you gay ?

Re:NBC's olympic coverage sucks ass (1)

btempleton (149110) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802357)

Well, the Olympics are of course in theory not for the viewers, but the TV coverage is.

One of the problems is that races against the clock, best time at the end wins, are not the best TV. Not nearly the drama of races where people are competing at the same tme. Snowboardcross (and to some extent parallel slalom snowboarding) have the race element that makes for good TV. And hockey, curling also can make good TV because you are seeing the real competition directly. Curling is rare in Olympic sports because it is a game with a moderate amount of strategy as well as having good control of individual shots. The thing that turns people off curling is that it can be slow at times. Like baseball, sometime the slowness is tense and delicious, other times it's boring.

Having MythTV on the other hand makes curling great. You can play at 2x and still hear the commentary, or smooth 3x to watch the less important parts of the ends really fast. Makes a good game for TV.

Re:NBC's olympic coverage sucks ass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802460)

Snowboarding shouldn't be in the olympics but curling should ?

Are you gay ?


No, he's a Newfie.

This is why I want Disney/ABC coverage. (1)

MtViewGuy (197597) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802681)

And the reason is simple: Disney could use ESPN, ESPN2, likely ABC Family Channel and possibly ESPN Classic channel to cover Olympic events live around the clock without interfering with normal ABC programming, so that ABC doesn't lose the profitable daytime soap opera programs. This will allow ABC to show a nightly compilation highlights program during prime time that is three hours long.

Re:This is why I want Disney/ABC coverage. (1)

sam1am (753369) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802809)

I'd love it too. But you see, the Olympics want broadcast, over-the-air exposure. Nevermind that ESPN and ESPN2 are both available in roughly 90 million households in the US.

But I could definately ESPN Classic, perhaps even ESPNU (lots of college athletes in the games). Perhaps the biggest improvement for olympic coverage would be using ESPN Deportes (not that I speak spanish, but I think it would be a great move).

Don't forget regular highlights/updates on ESPN News

Not to mention, you'd get three HD channels available for use, too - ABCHD, ESPNHD, ESPN2HD.

Not likely anytime soon (well, obviously, with the NBC contract...)

Also Interesting to consider how much NBC paid for the Torino games (613 million) vs NFL deals [washingtonpost.com] .. 1.1 Billion/year for ESPN's MNF. NBC, 600 million a year. Fox: 712.5 million a year. CBS: 622.5 million a year.

Re:NBC's olympic coverage sucks ass (1)

neoform (551705) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802692)

Snowboarding and freestyle skiing shouldn't be olympic sports; save that shit for the x-games. When I'm watching the Olympic games, I should never hear a commentator say "he got sick air on that phat run". Let me guess, bobsledding and skeleton is a real sport? Freestyle skiing is very difficult and strenuous. It's in the olympics for a reason.

Re:NBC's olympic coverage sucks ass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802768)

Their coverage is terrible. During the opening ceremonies they talked about each coutry's politics, how stupid is that? Aren't the Olympics supposed to be about PEACE? Asside from this it's a sporting event...

How about during the NFL player introductions the commentators start talking about quaterback so and so being a repbublican or democrat and that he supports abortion or something. This would completely distract that whole game, it would be stupid and unprofessional.

During the Athens 2004 Olympics opening ceremonies, NBC talked politics too. I downloaded the BBC's Athens 2004 opening ceremonies and they talked sports. They discussed the athletes and which events they would participate in and their potential at gold.

Anyway....

Curling is where it's at. You see that rock move!!?! IT'S CURLING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

whoop-dee-do (1)

sdnoob (917382) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802307)

and with the absolutely brilliant performance of the american hockey team this year; they might actually get a half-dozen hits on their stream. ebersol himself could host the stream on his home broadband connection and still have the pipe left to seed the latest survivor episode.

Is this revolutionary? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802309)

AOL has already proven with Live 8 that a large stream event is possible. The press release from AOL says 175,000 concurent streams at more then 60Gb/s. The AOL backbone is comprised of OC-192's (atdn.net) and all of this content was served in house with out use of Akamai to the ENTIRE world. This is hardly reveolutionary.

Do you believe in Miracles? (1)

kaufmanmoore (930593) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802312)

NBC does. I've got Sweden 3-1.

Re:Do you believe in Miracles? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802517)

Boo Hoo it will most likely be interspursed with tons of footage from the miracle on ice...Typically we and the Canucks went and decided to play square box pp defence. And a close centre ice trap..NHL style ...end result the Fins and Swedes kicked the shit out of us on offensive ...Canada losing to the Swiss was the icing on the cake! Who was the brilliant coach that did the Canadian game plans, no doubt a product of the 70s Philly rough house scene! Might have even been rigged...We and the Canadians lost out, not because of the skill of the players but the lack of real coaching and stupid big ice tactics. Ruffhousing and double teaming around the boards just does not work on big ice. Brilliant *&^($#^%(

NBC ya (1)

transami (202700) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802314)

Good grief. When's the last time anyone saw a past olympic event that was more than a 3 second blip on a prepackaged news blip. And they're worried about DRM here? Let's be clear. They are going to show the event for a day. Some people will watch it, most won't and almost everyone will NEVER SEE IT AGAIN. Wow, there's a lot of repeat business in that brilliant model!

They don't have a clue about today's internet culture. You think they would have caught on last time, but obviously they are still clueless.

NBC this! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802399)

Wow, there's a lot of repeat business in that brilliant model!

Precisely.
I've never heard anyone say "Hey, want to come over and watch last year's world series?"
Are they worried about someone making their own highlights tape? All that the DRM will do is make it hard for someone like me to watch. I refuse to use the newest Real or Windows Media players. Maybe I want to watch hockey, but I don't want to upgrade my media players to watch NBC's Wonderful World Of DRM. If it is so damn important to me to watch, I'll program my damn VCR to record it. Other slashdotters may feel free to Tivo it.

Re:NBC ya (1)

SetupWeasel (54062) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802430)

I saw about 10 hockey games live, about as many curling matches, some cross country and biathalon in the morning, and some other live events on the weekend.

Maybe they are preparing for 2008 and 2010. Streaming video seems almost ready for real use after years and years of promises it was on the cusp. Since most of the events are of niche interest and they need the primetime nuggets to manufacture ad revenue, streaming video might be the answer to real olympic coverage in a couple years.

Re:NBC ya (2, Insightful)

Basehart (633304) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802731)

"Maybe they are preparing for 2008 and 2010. Streaming video seems almost ready for real use after years and years of promises it was on the cusp...."

After watching Speed TV slowly turn into NASCAR TV I'm hoping motor sports promoters soon realize the only way they can get through to audiences in the USA is online.

Dakar, WRC and numerous other local, national and international motor sports events have been dropped from Speed TV's scheduling in favor of reality TV style chop shop and street drag racing shows, while the omnipresent NASCAR programming from our friends at NASCAR Corp fills in the gaps that aren't already taken by infomercials for exercise machines and bottle openers.

Whoever gets it together to offer motor sports events online gets my $$$'s.

Re:NBC ya (1)

SetupWeasel (54062) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802830)

You know, with as many channels as we have, there is no excuse for the lack of sports coverage that we have. I understand that the IOC sold NBC the exclusive rights to the olympics seemingly forever, so in my opinion, it's almost a lost cause in the US. However, the fact that we cannot get reasonable international sports coverage is beyond my comprehension. We shouldn't just get soccer. We should be able to get everything from table tennis to Aussie rules football.

How much would the rights to niche sports cost in the US? I can't imagine it would be more expensive than, say, all those dumb "original" shows on ESPN.

US Only? (1)

DesireCampbell (923687) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802315)

I'm kinda pissed that only US residents get to watch the feed, leaving my fellow Canadians out...

But then again, Canada's out of the running - so I don't give a shit about the Olympics anymore. :P

Canadian Men's Hockey Team (1)

whitehatlurker (867714) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802352)

Canada's out of the running

They weren't really in the running, were they? It's a good thing we have women who can play hockey, eh?

Re:US Only? (1)

i_should_be_working (720372) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802363)

Don't feel bad. As an American living in Canada I remember NBC's coverage and know first hand how much better olympic coverage is here than in the states. Someone a few posts above was moaning about how NBC has all this hype and half-hour specials detailing some atheltes life and blah blah blah ad nauseum instead of showing the sports. And it made me glad that I'm here to enjoy this year's olympics. We aren't missing anything.

Re:US Only? (1)

blueadept1 (844312) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802831)

As an American living in Canada

OPEN TRANSMISSION
You are not an American anymore. You are a Canadian. Assimilate.
END TRANSMISSION

For those of you just joining us (1)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802319)

For the benefit of people who come accross this article in a search, you might want to notice that the /. article posted immediately before this one [slashdot.org] estimates that Akamai can only handle 150,000 streams at a time.

Put these two articles together: and you come to the conclusion that Internet streaming just isn't ready for prime time. TV will always be more easily moved over broadcast technology, not something that has the overhead of IP.

Re:For those of you just joining us (1)

bitingduck (810730) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802495)

estimates that Akamai can only handle 150,000 streams at a time

Google has been trying to support the Tour of California by streaming video coverage of the race. They apparently had 60,000 people trying to watch on the first day (according to the on-line text commentary), many of whom (including me) spent a lot of time looking at a window that said "buffering...". It sounded like they added capacity the next days, but I still mostly got "buffering", and occasional video for a few seconds at a time, followed by it freezing, and maybe playing again.

I did finally get to watch about 20 minutes of the streaming (up to the finish) on Friday.

They were using akamai for at least some of the streaming, and it sounds like they actually contracted with someone to provide the whole video feed service (rather than use some in house beta capability)

Re:For those of you just joining us (1)

WhatAmIDoingHere (742870) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802553)

But the replies to the story pretty much prove that 15k is WAY too low of a guess.

It works out to 15 streams per server (or somewhere around there).

Re:For those of you just joining us (1)

heptapod (243146) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802597)

estimates that Akamai can only handle 150,000 streams at a time

They'll have bandwidth to spare considering how the Olympics are tanking in the ratings this year!

Re:For those of you just joining us (1)

drasfr (219085) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802693)

Well... sure... I agree with current infrastructure... But... If we could live in a dream world... There is still the experimental (for life??) multicast network... It was created to solve these problems. But it's been experimental for....... If companies were to push for it. It could work and solve all the problems.

Thoughts on this or am I wrong?

Dang. (1)

cosmotron (900510) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802324)

DRM means that I won't be able to watch it in Linux, right? I hate DRM.

Gold Metal? (1)

MSBob (307239) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802328)

Given that those things aren't made of actual gold anymore, perhaps this is more of a Freudian slip than a typo?

Re:Gold Metal? (1)

jxyama (821091) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802372)

They aren't "made" of gold, but they certainly contain gold... "Gold medals" in Olympics are actually silver medals that are gold plated. (Ref: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gold_medal [wikipedia.org] )

Re:Gold Metal? (1)

cmacb (547347) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802462)

"They aren't "made" of gold, but they certainly contain gold... "Gold medals" in Olympics are actually silver medals that are gold plated."

Well, there went any inspiration I had to start an excercise program.

*whew*

it will be interesting to see if it can sustain... (1)

Psx29 (538840) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802333)

well now that it's been posted to slashdot it will be even more interesting..hmm..

BBC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802366)

Da BBC Has ALREADY been up IN DIS bitCHHHH

How to improve NBC Olympic coverage (1)

Palal (836081) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802383)

1. STOP MIXING EVENTS! I want to watch downhill skiing and I don't care about hockey! (I do but that's besides the point). I want to be able to watch a single competition and I want to know when it will start and when it will end. I don't want to have them mix everything together! I have to tape all of this and then watch all this stuff! 2. They have NBC, CNBC, MSNBC and USA. Three out of the four can be used to broadcast olympic events 24/7. So you set appart time slots on each channel for each sport and advertise it as such. The less popular sports should be shown on cable and the more popular sports should be shown on broadcast channels (or vice-versa if the cable companies pay them). 3. USA is not the only country there! Since they have so much underutilized timeslots, why not show other countries? I, for example, want to watch other countries' competitors and I'd be willing to tape this at 3 AM if I had to. 4. If they don't have enough slots for less popular competitors/sports, why not tape them and put them online with DRM/IP restrictions? I'd be glad to watch them that way too. 5. Hopefully I won't need stupid NBC next time around since I am planning on going to the 2010 Winter Olympics since it's coming to my coast (Vancouver) only a few hours' flight. BTW. Who is covering the Olympics for Canada and how are they doing?

Re:How to improve NBC Olympic coverage (2, Informative)

yetiman (262330) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802436)

The CBC is covering it as always...and doing a damn fine job as always.

Re:How to improve NBC Olympic coverage (2, Informative)

Kankraka (936176) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802726)

Indeed they are! I've been watching it on HD at work, wow that's amazing :D. CBC just does sports right!

Re:How to improve NBC Olympic coverage (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802720)

1. First off, the cable stations don't mix events nearly as much as the broadcast network. USA, MSNBC, and CNBC had huge blocks dedicated to uninterrupted curling matches, hockey matches, and full coverage of biathlon and cross-country events. Secondly, for prime time, not mixing would be a disaster. NBC would immediately lose everyone not interested in the one sport they were covering.

2. What you describe is pretty much what was done. The less popular stuff, plus events that really needed to be shown uninterrupted, like hockey or curling, were shown on cable. There really isn't enough going on in the Winter Olympics to merit 24/7, but they had a godawful amount of coverage anyway. Certainly more than I could watch.

3. They did show other countries, especially on the cable networks. There was a ton of hockey coverage, not just the US and Canadian teams. Curling wasn't just limited to the US, either.

I have to wonder how much of the coverage all the bitchers and complainers actually watched. With the help of the three cable networks, EVERY Olympic sport got air time. Of course the NBC broadcast coverage was limited to the most popular events, but who gives a shit? That's what VCRs and DVRs are for -- to tape the stuff on cable and watch it instead.

DRM!? (1)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802385)

I guess I'd better get crackin'...get it? C'mon LAUGH! All I need is a proxy up in the states...right? That's how my friends get DirecTV. They just bill it to an American address and bring the box down here. It might not be legal, but everybody gets paid, anything else is irrelevent.

DRM, IP protection????? (2, Funny)

presarioD (771260) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802388)

  1. Enable proxy
  2. mplayer -dumpfile Olympics.wmv -dumpstream -playlist "http://NBC.sucks/Olympics-DRMed-don't touch-Americans only.wmv"

Mac-compatible? (1)

Donniedarkness (895066) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802393)

What I want to know is what format this video stream will be in. For the other Olympic videos on NBC's site, you MUST have a PC with Windows Media Player to be able to watch them. I know that there is an OSX version of WMP, but it apperently can't play the videos on NBC's site.

I think that is ridiculous. They should at least have an alternate format for the rest of us.

Re:Mac-compatible? (1)

Darth Maul (19860) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802423)

Please just conform and buy a Windows PC. Stop trying to be different. You want to consume all this media like a good citizen, right? You need a platform we trust.

Re:Mac-compatible? (1)

Ilgaz (86384) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802478)

Ahem, bad news...

"Video Support
NBCOlympics.com video can be viewed in Windows Media Player 6 or higher on a PC.

Playlist Support
The playlist auto advance functionality is supported in Internet Explorer 5.5 or higher for Windows. It is not supported on a Mac."

Good news is, I suspect even if Akamai network can handle that crap named "windows media server", also as windows media backwards format does not have "fallback support" like Real or Quicktime does, a nightmare for clients is on the way.

Funny is, I suspect Akamai will be using Helix Server on their huge network, aka real server to stream windows media. :) Yes it can stream windows media.

Here is the thing they will probably use:
http://www.realnetworks.com/products/media_deliver y.html [realnetworks.com]

NBC Sucks. (1)

Cadre (11051) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802680)

I think that is ridiculous. They should at least have an alternate format for the rest of us.

I know. This just pisses me off. About a week before the games started Flip4Mac was working. I played a couple clips and it worked. Then the day the games actually start they break it and we haven't had coverage since. And NBC goes to great lengths to not list any ways to contact them to complain about this either. Fuck NBC.

Should have started day one. (1)

Mike_ya (911105) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802412)

/side rant
The silver medal game was on TV today at 2pm eastern.
Could they not schedule the gold medal game either later today or later tomorrow? Not liking the 8am start. /side rant

The streaming is something they should have been doing for the entire Olympic Games, instead of this one hockey game. It would have been nice to catch some of the games from the comfort of my desk at work.

Do they really think that many people in the US are going to be interested in Finland vs Sweden? The only ones that are would be watching it on TV anyway. The game is on at 8am on Sunday morning. I don't see a lot of demand for the internet stream. Be different if it was a weekday.

Having said that I do think the Olympic committee should require, at least here in the US that any media company, like NBC that carries the Olympics provide live internet streams of all the events. That would make catching the Olympics particularly during the week a lot easier.

BBC (2, Insightful)

mr_tommy (619972) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802434)

Don't the BBC do this.... daily? And not just for the Olympics?!

No more crashed stars, a good game at last (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802448)

With all the NHL stars out of the competition finally we will see a decent game of hockey, the stupidity the NHL have sumerged into the last years have hit the players hard, to the point they forgot hockey is a fast game not chess.

Good for NBC

US vs Canada (1)

Eightyford (893696) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802452)

Too bad we don't get to see a US vs Canada match. Those are always exciting. Ah well, the Fins definately deserve to win this one. They don't have four lines of superstars like Canada, but they play amazingly well as a team.

Re:US vs Canada (1)

Kankraka (936176) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802741)

:P I really hope you're using the term "super stars" lightly, seeing as they played much less than super.

Canadian Lesbians kick ass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802465)

Yeah I know is off topic but canadian women kicked mens asses on this olimpics.

Beer drinking, ass scratching, hockey watching and couch potatoes canadian men suck ass.

Go Canadian Leasbian!!!!...So Sexy....

anyone else? (5, Insightful)

SuperBanana (662181) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802482)

The video stream will have DRM and IP protection to attempt to limit access to residents of the US

Raise your hand if you're:

  • Tired of the location Olympic games being picked based on a bribe-fest (with your tax dollars as the ante money)
  • Tired of your tax dollars going towards facilities that most often are never used again
  • Tired of being shown only the most 'marketable' events or not seeing them at all, because only one news source is granted "rights"
  • Tired of the drama
  • Tired of people who happen to be good at a particular sport getting acts of congress to instantly give them citizenship while hard-working, tax-paying greencarders have to wait years and pass exams
  • Tired of the olympic committee getting special legislation to protect its interests and giving it the ability to shut down businesses simply because they contain the word "olympic" in their title
  • Tired of the drug scandals and an IOC obviously looking the other way, like virtually every other major sports sanctioning body
  • Tired of "for the sport" or "for the joy of competition" having turned into "for the money", right down to the recent decision by the IOC to allow athletes to be paid endorsements and more

The list goes on...and don't get me started about the sex-fests that go on in the olympic "village" [scotsman.com] ; ever wonder why the media isn't allowed in? It's for "privacy" all right...

Used to be that when the olympics came on in the winter, we'd fire up the TV, make popcorn, and watch. We stopped watching right around the same time they started doing 10 minute long fluff pieces about athletes, instead of just showing us the damn competitions.

Re:anyone else? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802514)

I ran out of hands on the fourth item.

Now back to my home galaxy to retrieve a warp drive for those skeptics at the patent office...

Re:anyone else? (1)

TopShelf (92521) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802711)

I'm just tired of all the whining about the Olympics!

Frankly, I don't think NBC has done near as many "athlete profile" pieces as they've done in the past, and have done a better job at showing more events in a given evening. If you really want your curling fix, try USA, MSNBC, or CNBC. And the IOC has probably done a good a job as any sports organization of taking a hard line on doping and drug use by athletes.

I'll be up bright and early tomorrow morning for the Sweden/Finland hockey final, which should be a dandy. I'll go with the Swedes, 3-2...

Just a question (1)

caereth (645984) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802501)

What's stopping people from watching this on the TV? Wouldn't that be more convenient and higher quality than some web stream? Myself I hope Sweden wins as I am a Swede, but Finlands team has seemed awfully good this year, so it will be a tough match. I guess there are some people without access to TV but having access to a computer. But those are likely at work and shouldn't be watching the game anyway ;)

Streaming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802547)

Cycling.tv [cycling.tv] has been streaming cycling races live from Europe for the past year or so. They streamed the Het Volk [wikipedia.org] this morning, and I think they are streaming Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne on Sunday. Yeah not as exciting, or as fast-paced, as hockey; but seeing as I'm stuck in Canada where cycling gets almost zero coverage on TV, it's better than nothing. And they don't bore the viewer to death with endless stories about 'Lance', unlike OLN.

Rootkit perhaps (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802583)

If I watch this puppy will I later discover an NBC rootkit on my computer? They do mention something about updating the DRM on my machine.

rather they streamed it HD on a subchannel (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802600)

We've been watching the Olympics using the pcHDTV card, old GeForce2 FX5200( DVI ) to HDTV via HDMI-DVI cable picking up the local NBC station off the antenna. Awesome. So sending a live feed on a subchannel would be my wish.

I haven't bothered to read any of the comments... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14802684)

...so you have to excuse me when I say "IT'S 'MEDAL', NOT 'METAL', YOU FUCKING ILLITERATE INTERNET FAGGOT!! WHY THE FUCK ARE YOU ON THE INTERNET WHEN YOU ONLY KNOW HOW TO SPELL THINGS PHONETICALLY?! SERIOUSLY, YOU SHOULD SUCK A DUCK COCK AND DIE!!

Fucking idiot loser shitface. I hope you die of ass cancer. I hate you, you suck, and I'm going to keep hurling epithets at you until the lameness filter lets me through without telling me that I've used too many caps to explain what a useless cockfuck you are.

Investment? (1)

thebiss (164488) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802701)

Certainly if Akamai succeeds, it will set a precident that NBC will tap again, and that other broadcasters may join.

For those that have cashed out of Google, perhaps now's the time to invest in Akamai, if you haven't already http://clearstation.etrade.com/cgi-bin/details?Sym bol=AKAM&event=peek [etrade.com] .

Sustain the load?? (1)

WoTG (610710) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802705)

It's Finland vs. Sweden. I can't imagine too many people will watch this one. Let me put it this way, I'd bet that the Victoria's Secret stream will have had more viewers.

If only it was Canada vs. USA...

Destined to Fail (1)

EEBaum (520514) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802753)

Who watches Olympic hockey?

Gold 'metal' game? (1)

KFury (19522) | more than 8 years ago | (#14802822)

I wish I could win a gold metal. Nowadays they only give out gold plastic.
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