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SBD/August 9, 2012/Olympics
Dick Ebersol Defends NBC's Olympic Coverage, Says It Is About Storytelling
Published August 9, 2012
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THE DEBATE RAGES ON: USA Today's Christine Brennan said NBC is "getting great ratings and that’s terrific for them," but it is "embarrassing for the network of David Brinkley and John Chancellor to not be showing these things live." Brennan: "This is not just entertainment. ... This is significant international news, sports news or otherwise, and to be holding it off for eight hours for the West Coast, that’s just an embarrassment for the great news division of NBC.” She added, “There is something bigger here and that’s called your reputation” ("The J.T. the Brick Show," Fox Sports Radio, 8/9). But the HOLLYWOOD REPORTER's Tim Goodman writes under the header, "Why I'm Not Complaining About NBC's Olympics Coverage." Goodman: "Do I hate the tape delays? Yes. The editing? Yes. The schmaltzy packages? Sure, sometimes. ... Could NBC be doing better? Hell yes. And if ABC did it, the answer would be hell yes again. CBS, too. Fox, as well. ESPN for sure." Goodman writes, "Soon I might start to complain about people complaining about it. It's tiring. And repetitive. And it will not help. The Olympics will never, ever be broadcast in real time unless the United States government foots the bill and tells PBS to turn the cameras on and go home" (HOLLYWOOD REPORTER, 8/17 issue).
MISSED OPPORTUNITY: The FINANCIAL TIMES' Andrew Edgecliffe-Johnson writes under the header "Lessons From Missed Olympic Opportunity." NBC "missed an opportunity to sell season passes to people with no pay-TV contract who would pay to watch on their laptop or iPad." If it "included advertising, this need not cannibalise its core business." This could have been "a chance to get younger customers used to paying for content." NBC will "be able to claim success in the short term, but it is hard to imagine that the next generation has been inspired by its 20th century approach to London 2012" (FINANCIAL TIMES, 8/9).