Tag Archives: nbc

Getting Authenticated

I spent a good part of the weekend watching the Olympics (can I use that word without IOC permission?). Authentication FailNBC is wall to wall with them across all of their networks and it’s great. It’s truly the smorgasbord of sports – a grand buffet with a little something for everyone. Just in case you’re still hungry, NBC is also streaming everything to anyone who can prove they have a cable TV subscription. Seems fair – why have to pay for the same content a second time?

As an aside, that availability of this streaming has me confused about why people are complaining via social media about NBC’s TV coverage – what they choose to air  on which networks, etc.  You can be your own producer, and if you’re tech savvy enough to complain in the Twittersphere about it you’re probably savvy enough to figure out how to hook a computer up to a TV screen to watch the streaming as if it was TV.

I tried to get myself authenticated to do exactly that and found out that the weak link in the chain is actually the cable operator.  Well, specifically MY cable operator.  Every time I went through the process, which involves going to the NBCOlympics.com site and entering your cable user ID and password via your own provider’s site, I got a weird server message.  Not an error message as if I had the wrong information – a message you see in the graphic that’s indecipherable.  I finally emailed Cablevision support.  To their credit, they emailed me back within the hour that I was now authorized.  I wasn’t – same message when I went to sign in.  I used an online chat link they sent me to try to resolve it.  The very nice person (named Keith, coincidentally) let me know after a few minutes that he was a TV support guy and I needed to chat with the Internet guy.  Start a new chat.  Kevin (the new rep) asked if I had Cablevision’s internet service, which I don’t.  I reminded him that as long as I had TV I was supposed to be able to watch the streams.  He checked (5 minutes) and discovered I was right.  The issue turned out to be Chrome on a Mac – I was authorized instantly on a PC using Firefox.  Once I installed Flash into Safari, it worked on my Mac as well.  Strangely, it now works on Chrome too.

I suspect we’ll see a lot more of this as the pipe we use to access content becomes less important than the content itself.  I’m hoping the bumps will vanish and that rather than a great product such as this surfacing once every four years, we can use it every day.  What about you?  Have you tried the streaming?  What do you think?  Any issues getting it to work?

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Filed under sports business, Thinking Aloud

The Next Star

The Next Food Network Star

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As you probably know, one of my favorite TV channels is The Food Network and since it’s Friday, I want to focus on one of their programs for our Foodie Friday Fun.  This is the seventh season of The Next Food Network Star which I think is a really interesting program for a number of reasons.  The biggest name to emerge from the show is the past winner Guy Fieri, who has become a star on NBC (Minute To Win It) as well as on a number of food-related shows but a few of the other winners, and runners-up, have continued on The Food Network and help to prove that the process works.  Can it work for you? Continue reading

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Filed under Helpful Hints, Thinking Aloud

Tin Ear

Current logo was used since 1986

Sometimes you just have to say you can’t make this stuff up.

As I’m hitting the computer this morning, Twitter is buzzing over a big aftershock that hit Haiti. Horrible breaking news that affects millions of people and, now, thousands of relief workers as well.

I read in the Times online about the election result in Massachusetts and how it could affect the lives of millions by impacting the health care legislation.

As I’m getting ready to go to some meetings today, I flipped on The Today Show thinking I’d learn a little more about these topics on the 7:30 news update. Right?

Not so much. Top Story? A rumor that Tiger Woods is at a sex rehab clinic in Mississippi, complete with a live stand-up from a reporter NBC sent there, a story that impacts 2 people directly.  Frankly, I was so shocked by the choice of stories that I didn’t really hear what the guy was saying other than that the clinic is becoming a tourist attratction.

NBC News is a respected news organization that ought to know a lot better.  Or maybe I’m the one with a tin ear and not their producers.  What do you think?

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Is We Stoopid?

faces of social television

I love having smart friends.  Inevitably, they make me think about things in different ways which is how we grow, right?  Today’s little bit of mental stimulation comes courtesy of @pudge44 via Twitter (you can get his particulars from his profile page) whom you should follow if you have any interest in sports, Autism, or just smarts.  In any event, here is a series of his tweets which raise a great question: Continue reading

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Filed under Helpful Hints, Thinking Aloud

Choice?

I was up way too late last night watching the great performances by Nastia Liukin and Shawn Johnson.  Of course, as a soccer fan, I’m missing the USA/Canada Women’s match since it’s not on TV and as a Cablevision subscriber, I have no access to NBCOlympics.com video.  Yes, I’m aware that it’s pretty easy to spoof the system so one can watch but that’s not this morning’s point.

NBC is charging cable operators for a supplemental package of channels for the Olympics and the online broadband site.  While many operators have said OK (and I’m wondering how they’re passing along the costs to consumers), Cablevision said no thanks.  I have no issue with this- it’s the same decision as they and others make with respect to new channels and broadband packages such as ESPN360 all the time.

My issue is that history shows that consumers don’t like gatekeepers and will find ways around them.  AOL’s walled garden is gone.  Others are as well.  ISP’s have been fairly open to date (I say fairly since some of where Comcast is heading bothers me) and wireless networks are slowly opening.   Again, I have no quarrel with Cablevision’s decision.  But why didn’t SOMEONE ask me is I wanted to pay for it?  Cable guys hate ala carte pricing, NBC wants to get paid on the whole of a footprint rather than by individual users, but in the end, in theory, my sleepy wife misses some great performances.  Sure, she can watch highlights, but if NBCOlympics.com has any archived full-length stuff she’s out of luck.

By the way, why does NBC have you install Silverlight (required to watch) before they let you know if you are able to see live video?  Nice benefit to our friends in Redmond but sort of sneaky.

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Filed under Huh?, Thinking Aloud