Monday, March 1, 2010

The Final Nail In the Coffin

I'll admit it, I tried to watch some of the Olympics coverage despite the evidence that it was a complete trainwreck. I wanted to see the events for myself and so I subjected myself to the choppy approach of tape delayed, back story heavy broadcast that NBC followed. They didn't air most events live, instead figuring people would watch regardless. And apparently they did, quite a bit. But I finally learned a few days into the broadcasts that I could go to CTV in Canada and watch videos and see results as they were happening. If it was something that I wanted to watch later, I could put up with the crap knowing the end result was worth watching.
I'll admit that it's an uphill battle to see things go back to the way they were, simply because there's too much influence and money involved with things, and right now, ratings and advertising dollars are the only thing that matters. Loyalty doesn't mean anything in television, as evidenced by the rather curious decision to forgo some of the coverage of the closing ceremonies party for the premier of some crappy pilot. Seriously, this is almost equatable to leaving the coverage of an NBA playoff game in the third quarter because we need to show the next episode of the Hills. NBC doesn't care about its viewers at all, and if you thought anything different, well this should finally convince you otherwise.
Now some crazy people have said that we'll miss NBC as soon as they're gone from the Olympics, and the thing is there are parts of what they did that was OK. I liked the use of technology to super impose athlete images in the same frame to compare runs, and some of the commentary was actually good from experts that know what they are talking about. But seriously, the rest of it was the worst possible coverage of sports simply because NBC treated it like entertainment rather than sports. I hope the next network will learn that events need to be seen live, the stories need to unfold naturally rather than try and create them before hand, and the promotional stuff needs to be kept to a minimum. And it's not a good service to your fans when you put games on channels that might not be available everywhere. Look, I get it's a challenge to cover it all, and tastes vary, but at the same point, shoving skating at us every moment doesn't do most sports fans any good.
Besides, it will be good to talk about different things for once. I mean, seriously, tomorrow is Dr. Seuss's birthday and so I'll need to celebrate as best I can, because that's what I do, it's GK I am.

No comments: