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Olympics Complaint Line

Ok, all you Americans, today is the day we start our quadrennial airing of grievances over the pathetic coverage we get of the Olympic games.  It doesn’t matter if it’s ABC or NBC, what we are subjected to is a 2 week commentator gabfest with up-close-and-personal special interest stories about some AMERICAN athlete overcoming adversity to get to the games.  That athlete might not even make it to the top ten in his sport but we must follow him or her.

If there is an event covered, it will be chopped into bite sized pieces, we’ll cut away during some other country’s athlete’s turn and the events we might actually want to see will be overridden by the network’s decision to feature Apollo Ohno winning his zillionth gold medal.  I like the kayaking events and the jumping equestrian events and even the weightlifting stuff.  I can’t remember the last time the commies in charge of NBC or ABC let us see those things.

And we can’t see the games anywhere else.  If we want to catch another country’s coverage, we have to go there.  I envy the Americans who are close enough to the Canadian border to be able to catch the CBC coverage.  The internet is hermetically sealed for our protection.  No other coverage can get through without NBC’s approval.  It makes me feel like I’m living in the old Soviet Union under Breshnev.

Complaining to the network doesn’t help.  Back in 2004, I was able to get an Olympics premium package from my satellite provider.  At least I had a choice of several channels.  In 2008, no package.  It was NBC’s coverage on one channel or nothing.  I’m going to guess it was a marketing plan put together to return shareholder value.  Those sucker Americans, where else are they going to go?  It’s NBC or nothing.  Let’s just phone it in.

This year, I don’t have satellite.  I have a cable modem for my wifi.  That means I’m probably going to have to install silverlight on my mac and watch whatever it is NBC provides in even more truncated form.  Is it any wonder why I haven’t been a regular Olympics watcher since 2004?


Your turn.

BTW, this site tells you how to watch the Olympics coverage from the BBC on your iPad or other devices.  I doubt it will work in the US but maybe the other freer people of the world can see it.  Let those of us behind the NBC iron curtain know if anything good happens.

24 Responses

  1. And I think that the reduction in viewers is interpreted as a lack of interest that will result in cutting back the pathetic level of coverage we have now.

    It doesn’t seem to occur to them that we want to see it all.

    Well, the Olympics is some private organization and so is NBC. And they get to decide what we get to see. And I guess they’ve decided that we don’t get to see much.

    • Here’s a new twist. There is an NBC iPad app but if you don’t have a cable subscription, it won’t work. How stupid is that? They could be selling coverage on that app, charging a premium price to all of the cord cutters but they won’t do it because they are working with cable companies. So, the Olympics sponsors won’t be getting their money’s worth either. I’ll be damned if I’m going to pay for a cable subscription just so I can g,st two weeks of poor programming of an international event. Nobody wins this.

      • We just found something called NBC Sports. Don’t have any idea how good this channel will be.

        I wouldn’t sign up for anything either.

  2. This is just the beginning. Corporate America can’t abide unbiased information getting into the hands of its subjects and is erecting roadblocks on Al Gore’s Information Superhighway. I look for the insanity quotient to rise as the diet of propaganda increases.

  3. At http://www.komonews.com there is an article titled “Alternative ways to watch the Olympics online”. They tell you how to use a proxy server in order to receive Olympics livestream from BBC, Eurovision, Canada TV. I don’t have tv, so that’s what I’m going to do.

    • I’ll have to check that out. Of course, it would be better and more profitable if we had access to a package for a reasonable price. NBC could be making a killing on sheer volume if it just streamed and got out of the fricking way.

      • They could have multiple streams – Track/field, water, gymnastics, people could buy the events (or category of event) they like. Instead of…. nothing. OMG what a crazy business plan.

        • It’s actually worse than that for Americans. NBC has decided to not stream the opening ceremonies- at all.
          Nope, if you’re an American, you can’t see them. The reasoning? It’s because you’re at work during the ceremonies. I guess employers don’t want you watching them. So, no streaming. If you are a cord cutter and you’re at home and want to stream the ceremonies, too damn bad.
          Is this a great country or what!?

          • That would be similar to, say European television companies, not streaming the opening ceremonies if/ when the event took place in the US because you know, we’d all be asleep anyway. As if the time of day – or as it were night – would stop people who want to watch from watching. Silly argument.

            Hope you get to see the show somehow/ eventually as it’s rumoured to be fricking brilliant. People allowed in to witness the rehearsals were seen leaving the show in tears … from laughing. 🙂

          • Don’t tell me, they’re going to turn it into Monty Python’s Twit Olympics. That would be hysterical.

      • I just signed up for a one-month VPN Pro package at the “cover my ass” proxy web server site for $10. Downloaded and installed software (easy) and now I can watch streams from UK or Canada with no problem. Plus, no idiot NBC announcers. Seems to work well if you feel like trying it.

        • I’m trying it. What uk site are you using? (not the IP address)
          Are you at BBC or BBC Sport?

          • For the proxy server, just choose anyone of the London servers. VPN will probably tell you that particular server gets a lot of traffic and will ask if you want them to find one for you that is open. Say yes and let VPN take care of it.

          • Ok, I’m there and I’m connected but there’s nothing live going on. Are you getting live feed?

          • I guess we just have to wait until it starts.
            Meanwhile, the US has really slipped. According to the BBC website, there will be 24 live channels and instant replay and all kinds of nifty features. You can follow individual athletes or teams. I have already favorited Team GB.
            It’s sad that the business of the Olympics has gotten so mercenary that many of the people who want to see them have to jump through hoops and hide behind proxy servers to do it. Sickening actually. This country is deteriorating fast.

          • I think they’re saving the beginning of the live feed until the opening ceremony. Right now it’s just pre-Olympic hype. I suspect that they made a deal with NBC not to show the opening ceremony until 8:00 this evening when NBC will (probably) begin its prime time coverage. Glad you got the proxy network working.

      • Perhaps NBC values Power over Profit.

  4. Yay! Not interested in sports/olympics! NBC can’t hurt me! (lots of good TV on cable these days too)

  5. My first complaint is the organizing committee’s unwillingness to schedule a moment of silence during the opening ceremonies to honor the Israeli athletes and coaches who were killed by terrorists forty years ago during the summer Olympic games.

  6. For anyone else using the proxy server route to watch the Olympics online, the opening ceremony should start live streaming at 3:00 Eastern Time.

  7. Watching the Opening Ceremony

  8. I contributed to the record-smashing viewership of the opening ceremonies. I LOVED the long tribute to the NHS. I only hope that Michelle O. enjoyed it as well, and will tell hubby all about it when she gets home.

    • Oh, and I happen to have interpreted the NHS sequence as a gigantic middle finger to RobOmneyCare. So sad for the medical insurance industry to have lost 60 years of profits in the UK! And don’t think they’re not trying to regain lost ground there.

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