August 20, 2004

Time for me to bitch about NBC's horrible Olympic coverage!

I love the Olympics. I always have. I even went to watch the Salt Lake games in 2002. It was one of the greatest experiences of my life. This is why NBC's awful coverage of the olympics makes me hopping mad.

For starters, they are showing practically nothing live. It's all shown tape-delayed between 12 to 36 hours. That's just ridiculous. It's 2004. We have this thing now called "The Internet" which allows me to access olympic results as soon as they happen. So I'll be watching Men's Volleyball or something, wonder how it's going to end, and look it up. Then, guess what? Volleyball is boring as hell to watch when you know how it's going to end. And no, don't tell me not to look it up. 90% of the fun of watching an event is being a part of it, not having any way of finding out how it will end other than sticking it through.

Seccondly, all they seem to be covering is Swimming and Gymnastics. And while Volleyball is boring to watch when you know who will win, Swimming is even boring to watch when you don't. Sure, some swimming. But every damn night for 6 straight nights? There are 35 events in the olympics, and NBC seems to be focused on two. They claimed that they and their affiliates would be covering all events this year, but they have barely given a nod to anything but swimming and gymnastics.

In closing, I want to make one simple point to fully illustrate how bad NBC's coverage truly is: the first modern olympics were held in Athens (same place they are right now) in 1896. At that time, people could communicate all over the world with the miracle of transoceanic telegraph cables. So when the athletes competed, reporters could then go telegraph their stories to their front offices, and the story would show up in the morning paper. Greece is 7 hours ahead of the US East coast. So an event finishing at, say, 2pm would have it's results cabled to New York at 10pm NY time. The results would be in the following morning's newspaper.

With NBC, you don't get the events until the following evening because of their moronic addiction to tape-delays of 12 to 36 hours. In other words: If these were the 1894 Athens games instead of the 2004 Athens games, we'd get olympic coverage faster because NBC IS LESS EFFECTIVE THAN NEWSPAPERS OF THE 19TH CENTURY!


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