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Monday, February 15, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Vancouver 2010: Watching The ‘Everywhere’ Olympics From 30,000 Feet

I wanted to pass along this great article about the Olympics and how NBC is using its technology to promote viewing. Despite the obvious flaw of tape-delaying the Games on the West Coast, where the Olympics are being held, it seems like the online aspect of the Games are going strong. There's still 2 more weeks of action to go but as long as the Olympics produce the stories people want to watch it looks like NBC may have found a way to present them.

Through some quirks of scheduling, I got my first taste of Olympics action on a laptop through in-flight wireless—not the big screen in our living room—and watched the winning ski jump late at night on demand using the NBC Olympics iPhone app. The 2010 Winter Olympics may not be the "everything online live" Olympics but it's close to the "everywhere" Olympics—as long as by everywhere in the U.S.,you mean on NBCOlympics.com.

The network, which expects to lose money on the Vancouver games, is trying a feat as tricky as some of the moves in pairs skating: produce a social media-centric Olympics without allowing video sharing or embedding. Perkins Miller, SVP of digital media for NBC Sports, makes no apologies for the decision. It's all part of a strategy to make every one of the 17 days count for every second. Key elements include keeping all the video on NBC Universal sites; making highlights freely available; and limiting online access to more than 1,000 hours of video on demand and 400 hours of live competition streaming to users who already pay for video via satellite, telecom or cable.

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Welcome to Olympic Updates, my continuing blog to following the Olympic Games. Founded in 2007, I have enjoyed providing news and information on the 2008 Beijing Summer Games and I look forward to keeping you up to date on the 2010 Vancouver Winter Games.

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