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Old 02-08-2014, 10:53 PM   #181
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I have decided I hate Mary carillo
Join the club. If she's not talking about tennis, then I don't need to hear her.
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Old 02-08-2014, 11:04 PM   #182
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The prime time commentary is different than the live commentary, though NBC is pretending the prime time commentary is live. I don't know why the prime time commentary is different, considering the live commentary is infinitely better. The current prime time commentary for figure skating is horrible with them poorly feigning surprise at things they already no are about to happen. It was better this morning.
I noticed and made a comment over in the main happy hour forum about this.
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Old 02-09-2014, 12:13 AM   #183
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Why is NBC touting we can watch live streaming on any device, anywhere...when they are using FLASH? I just tried watching a stream using every device, smart tv, and add on box in my collection, and NONE of them will work. I ended up plugging my laptop into the TV via HDMI. Why would they not use something compatible with more platforms?
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Old 02-09-2014, 12:42 AM   #184
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Another "interesting" thing is that you need to have Xfinity (Comcast) cable to get access to all the streaming. Comcast owns NBC. I see no conflict of interest there.
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Old 02-09-2014, 12:49 AM   #185
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Why is NBC touting we can watch live streaming on any device, anywhere...when they are using FLASH? I just tried watching a stream using every device, smart tv, and add on box in my collection, and NONE of them will work. I ended up plugging my laptop into the TV via HDMI. Why would they not use something compatible with more platforms?
By device they mean devices with web browsers such as Macs/PCs and tablets/smartphones. They specifically do not support box devices such as Roku or Apple TV.
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Old 02-09-2014, 12:56 AM   #186
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Another "interesting" thing is that you need to have Xfinity (Comcast) cable to get access to all the streaming. Comcast owns NBC. I see no conflict of interest there.
I have Armstrong Cable and am able to stream just fine. First time on the site I had to go through a shortverification process where I had to pick my cable company from a list of about two dozen then enter my Armstrong account name/passwd.
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Old 02-09-2014, 08:35 AM   #187
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I have Armstrong Cable and am able to stream just fine. First time on the site I had to go through a shortverification process where I had to pick my cable company from a list of about two dozen then enter my Armstrong account name/passwd.
Maybe it's just the mobile app. The only cable provider option I was given was Xfinity, though that's what I have.
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Old 02-10-2014, 07:21 AM   #188
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[SNIP]I don't know how you can gain new long-time viewers for a sport unless you help them understand what is going on. [SNIP]
This is the one thing that makes me a little crazy. I wish they would replace all the "human interest" stories with 60-90-second overviews of what we're about to watch, how it's scored, and what to be watching out for.

We couldn't figure out how they were arriving at the scores for the skijump yesterday...we ended up going online. Is it too much to ask for them to say "the final scores are based on three different scores: you can get up to 20 execution points from each of three judges, for a total of 60 points. You also get 60 points if your jump goes at least 95 meters, plus two points per meter if it goes longer than that. Finally, there are adjustments for wind and starting position at the top. You're looking at scores in the 140s for the winners."

That way, when the first person up only scores 110, I know it wasn't a good jump.
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Old 02-10-2014, 08:18 AM   #189
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Is it too much to ask for them to say "the final scores are based on three different scores: you can get up to 20 execution points from each of three judges, for a total of 60 points. You also get 60 points if your jump goes at least 95 meters, plus two points per meter if it goes longer than that. Finally, there are adjustments for wind and starting position at the top. You're looking at scores in the 140s for the winners." That way, when the first person up only scores 110, I know it wasn't a good jump.
When I was watching live, they did explain all of that. The prime time commentary is dumbed down for the masses expecting the normally gibberish commentary from prime time sports.
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Old 02-10-2014, 08:38 AM   #190
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I wonder how much the love broadcasts are effecting ratings? I watched most of the figure skating live during the day and once it came on prime time, I watched some DVR stuff of some sitcoms I had saved up. I repeated this both early and later in the NBC broadcast. I would imagine lots of people were doing the same. Last night especially with lots of other choices to watch, it had to be bad for NBC (or maybe not). As I'm not a big figure skating fan anyway, there was NO way I was going to watch it twice.

I think most of the features are fine and not overly long, but there was one feature that completely annoyed me because it was REALLY unnecessary and pointless. I can't remember who the athlete was, but they had a segment where they showed her transitioning to becoming a "housewife". They showed how she loved to clean and how she decided she needed to learn this because she'll have to do it eventually anyway. Then they showed her in the kitchen showing (I think it was Mary Carillo) how she cooked something. Really? Do I need to know this. I felt like I was reading her Facebook commentary. Show me how she trains, or what is special about her. NBC, you can do better.
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Old 02-10-2014, 08:42 AM   #191
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When I was watching live, they did explain all of that. The prime time commentary is dumbed down for the masses expecting the normally gibberish commentary from prime time sports.
Which is butt-backwards. The "die hards" are probably watching the live broadcasts and the casual viewer, who is who you need to explain things to, is watching primetime.

There are two things you can count of for the Olympics. People winning gold, silver and bronze, and people complaining about NBC's broadcast (and before them ABC, or CBS). You could show wall to wall LIVE broadcasts of JUST the events, and people will complain there are no special features about the athletes so they are just nameless faces to us. You can show EVERY event, and someone will complain that the CBC (or BBC, or French TV or Mongolian TV) was better.
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Old 02-10-2014, 10:13 AM   #192
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When I was watching live, they did explain all of that. The prime time commentary is dumbed down for the masses expecting the normally gibberish commentary from prime time sports.
Except for figure skating, the primetime and live commentaries are the same. I assume the problem is, the explanation came during part of the live coverage that didn't make it to prime time - after all, they have to squeeze a number of events, including alpine skiing, into that 4-hour-or-so slot.

And at least they explained how the scoring worked. In snowboarding, they just put up a single number, and don't bother explaining how the judges got there. Then again, the official rules for Olympic snowboard slopestyle don't explain how to do it, either:

"All judges will score the run by evaluating the run from start to finish with an overall precision. The judges evaluate the precise nature of the run in relation to maneuvers attempted, both individually and as a sequence. The overall composition of the run is very important as the judges evaluate the sequences of tricks, the amount of risk in the routine, and how the rider uses the course. The judges take falls, mistakes and stops into consideration and can deduct up to 20% of the points of the run/judge for each fall/stop."

As expected, at least one snowboarder has complained that one of the problems is, the event is run by FIS (the international skiing federation) rather than by an organization of snowboarders (in fact, when snowboarding was first added to the Olympics, some of the top names threatened to boycott because of this).
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Old 02-10-2014, 10:39 AM   #193
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As expected, at least one snowboarder has complained that one of the problems is, the event is run by FIS (the international skiing federation) rather than by an organization of snowboarders (in fact, when snowboarding was first added to the Olympics, some of the top names threatened to boycott because of this).
I can't blame them. One of the reasons figure skating is so screwed up now is that they are stuck in an organization that is run by speedskaters.
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Old 02-10-2014, 11:53 AM   #194
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Maybe it's just the mobile app. The only cable provider option I was given was Xfinity, though that's what I have.
There's a tiny "tap here to see the full list" button under the giant Xfinit banner.
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Old 02-10-2014, 11:56 AM   #195
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So, is NBC just re hosting some internationally produced videos? The events either have different announcers than were on TV or no announcers. I was hoping to use their site to binge on hockey games on my birthday next Sunday, rather than DVR them (space is at a premium) but I tried the women's hockey web feed last night and there are no announcers. I know earlier in the day the game was on NBCSN and Kenny Albert was calling it.

Also, the full screen video has a giant banner ad at the top, forcing them to shrink the image and possibly also screw up the aspect ratio (I couldn't tell). Their interstitial commercials aren't enough, they can't give us full screen video? And what's the funniest part, they didn't actually sell the banner. It just says watch the Olympics on NBC tonight. No actual paying sponsor.
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Old 02-10-2014, 12:19 PM   #196
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So, is NBC just re hosting some internationally produced videos? The events either have different announcers than were on TV or no announcers.
Yes, for the most part. This was also how it was done in London. Occasionally, there would be an NBC commentator, but for the most part, either there is no commentary (this is what is fed to the broadcasters (including NBC), so they can dub their own commentators over it) or commentary is provided by the host nation.

Sometimes, this backfires. At London, in the women's team sprint cycling final, if you watched the online stream, you saw China win the event, but they kept the feed on (I think they were waiting for the next event), and about five minutes later, they show the results again, and this time Germany is placed first and China second; they then show a replay where the viewers are supposed to guess that the Chinese team had done something illegal.
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Old 02-10-2014, 12:21 PM   #197
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I expect that for events they didn't broadcast. But for events they did, they can't host their own video instead? If not, why not?
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Old 02-10-2014, 01:04 PM   #198
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I wonder how much the love broadcasts are effecting ratings? ...snip
I think these might actually get pretty good ratings.
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Old 02-10-2014, 01:08 PM   #199
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Also, the full screen video has a giant banner ad at the top, forcing them to shrink the image and possibly also screw up the aspect ratio (I couldn't tell). Their interstitial commercials aren't enough, they can't give us full screen video? And what's the funniest part, they didn't actually sell the banner. It just says watch the Olympics on NBC tonight. No actual paying sponsor.
The banner ad on the streaming is hugely annoying. I watched figure skating on Thursday because the early stuff wasn't aired live, and I ended up taping a piece of paper over the top of my monitor to mask the banner ad.

I understand the annoyance at not having the commentary if you actually like the NBC broadcasters and commentary, but in some cases the naked pool feed with only the audio from the venue = blessed relief.
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Old 02-10-2014, 01:22 PM   #200
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Where can I find this feed of the naked pool? Asking for a friend. And myself.
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Old 02-10-2014, 01:42 PM   #201
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... I don't know how you can gain new long-time viewers for a sport unless you help them understand what is going on.
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Originally Posted by Lori View Post
This is the one thing that makes me a little crazy. I wish they would replace all the "human interest" stories with 60-90-second overviews of what we're about to watch, how it's scored, and what to be watching out for.

We couldn't figure out how they were arriving at the scores for the skijump yesterday...we ended up going online. Is it too much to ask for them to say "the final scores are based on three different scores: you can get up to 20 execution points from each of three judges, for a total of 60 points. You also get 60 points if your jump goes at least 95 meters, plus two points per meter if it goes longer than that. Finally, there are adjustments for wind and starting position at the top. You're looking at scores in the 140s for the winners."

That way, when the first person up only scores 110, I know it wasn't a good jump.
I agree, Lori. But apparently it is too much. Even experienced fans can benefit from a quick recap like that, because in some of these sports, the rules change every year, and if you only see the sport televised at the Olympics, you may not know about the rule change. And that's not even counting the cases where the rules for Olympic competitions are NOT THE SAME as the ordinary elite competitions. NBC really needs to do better in Primetime.

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When I was watching live, they did explain all of that. The prime time commentary is dumbed down for the masses expecting the normally gibberish commentary from prime time sports.
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Which is butt-backwards. The "die hards" are probably watching the live broadcasts and the casual viewer, who is who you need to explain things to, is watching primetime.
Even viewers who do know what they are watching appreciate having someone else pointing out what they should be looking for.

I saw someone mess up a jump landing. So what went wrong? I wondered if he had landed with his weight too far back on his blade. Then Johnny Weir explained that the skater had landed with his weight too far back on his blade. So now I know I've gotten better about seeing what is happening.

In snowboarding, I may also see that someone has landed with his weight too far back on the board, but I appreciate hearing from the expert about why that happened (e.g the timing was off because he opened up from the twist/somersault at the wrong moment).

Snowboarding, figure skating, skiing, ski jumping, even curling -- so many of these sports are all about physics. But the basic principles you need to know are easy to understand, as long as you have someone who can explain them properly. Athletes are a mass moving themselves through space, or in curling and hockey, causing a mass to move through space. It's all about how you set that mass into motion, and how you keep it on the optimum path to go longer/faster/higher or to go where you want it to be.

As Lori said, the basic rules / scoring should be given at the outset; after that, the more complicated parts like tiebreakers can be explained if they come up.

There are some things that don't show up well when you are watching on TV. For figure skating, a TV-only viewer is not going to pick up the visual cues about how fast someone is moving across the ice as well as someone who has actually been at the rink and can translate their fixed-point experience of fast and slow skating to the TV-camera perspective. Ice dancing is one discipline that suffers especially from this -- it's difficult for the casual viewer to appreciate the difference in basic skating quality only from watching on TV.
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Old 02-10-2014, 01:51 PM   #202
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During the snowboarding the other day, one of the commentators mentioned how one of the athletes was using their non-dominant leg in some of their jumps and how much harder it was to do something like that. That's one of the things I really appreciate hearing as it's not obvious at all and would make a big difference in terms of difficulty, and makes the jumps much more impressive to watch.
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Old 02-10-2014, 02:20 PM   #203
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I agree, Lori. But apparently it is too much. Even experienced fans can benefit from a quick recap like that, because in some of these sports, the rules change every year, and if you only see the sport televised at the Olympics, you may not know about the rule change. And that's not even counting the cases where the rules for Olympic competitions are NOT THE SAME as the ordinary elite competitions. NBC really needs to do better in Primetime.





Even viewers who do know what they are watching appreciate having someone else pointing out what they should be looking for.

I saw someone mess up a jump landing. So what went wrong? I wondered if he had landed with his weight too far back on his blade. Then Johnny Weir explained that the skater had landed with his weight too far back on his blade. So now I know I've gotten better about seeing what is happening.

In snowboarding, I may also see that someone has landed with his weight too far back on the board, but I appreciate hearing from the expert about why that happened (e.g the timing was off because he opened up from the twist/somersault at the wrong moment).

Snowboarding, figure skating, skiing, ski jumping, even curling -- so many of these sports are all about physics. But the basic principles you need to know are easy to understand, as long as you have someone who can explain them properly. Athletes are a mass moving themselves through space, or in curling and hockey, causing a mass to move through space. It's all about how you set that mass into motion, and how you keep it on the optimum path to go longer/faster/higher or to go where you want it to be.

As Lori said, the basic rules / scoring should be given at the outset; after that, the more complicated parts like tiebreakers can be explained if they come up.

There are some things that don't show up well when you are watching on TV. For figure skating, a TV-only viewer is not going to pick up the visual cues about how fast someone is moving across the ice as well as someone who has actually been at the rink and can translate their fixed-point experience of fast and slow skating to the TV-camera perspective. Ice dancing is one discipline that suffers especially from this -- it's difficult for the casual viewer to appreciate the difference in basic skating quality only from watching on TV.
I wonder if this is because of us being in such a connected world were so many of us have access to "second screens" where we could look up things like rules (which might bore viewers...I disagree, but maybe that's their thinking). Of course we could also see the human interest stories on the web as well and just leave the viewing to the actual contests
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Old 02-10-2014, 02:21 PM   #204
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During the snowboarding the other day, one of the commentators mentioned how one of the athletes was using their non-dominant leg in some of their jumps and how much harder it was to do something like that. That's one of the things I really appreciate hearing as it's not obvious at all and would make a big difference in terms of difficulty, and makes the jumps much more impressive to watch.
I was shocked and horrified and amused at how many of the slopestyle terms I remembered from my near-obsession with CoolBoarders3.

Of course, I still don't know how THAT was scored. There were just some numbers.
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Old 02-10-2014, 02:23 PM   #205
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Who was doing the color commentary with Al Trautwig on Cross Country skiing. The guy was SCREAMING at us, he was so excited. If felt VERY unprofessional.
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Old 02-10-2014, 02:24 PM   #206
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Who was doing the color commentary with Al Trautwig on Cross Country skiing. The guy was SCREAMING at us, he was so excited. If felt VERY unprofessional.
Ha. my comment to my wife: "This guy is VERY excited about what is going on here"
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Old 02-10-2014, 02:42 PM   #207
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I wonder if this is because of us being in such a connected world were so many of us have access to "second screens" where we could look up things like rules (which might bore viewers...I disagree, but maybe that's their thinking). Of course we could also see the human interest stories on the web as well and just leave the viewing to the actual contests
A broadcast should never assume that the viewers know much about the sport or that they'll be motivated to go find additional information on their own. If the broadcaster is expecting the viewer to go get additional info, then the commentator should mention that and they should post a URL where people can learn more. But aside from that, the commentators should provide all the information that a neophyte viewer would need in order to watch and enjoy that event. And with the Olympics, that's especially true, since most of these events are things that the average viewer knows nothing about and likely has never seen, or if they have, it was four years ago at the previous Olympics.
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Old 02-10-2014, 03:56 PM   #208
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A broadcast should never assume that the viewers know much about the sport or that they'll be motivated to go find additional information on their own. If the broadcaster is expecting the viewer to go get additional info, then the commentator should mention that and they should post a URL where people can learn more. But aside from that, the commentators should provide all the information that a neophyte viewer would need in order to watch and enjoy that event. And with the Olympics, that's especially true, since most of these events are things that the average viewer knows nothing about and likely has never seen, or if they have, it was four years ago at the previous Olympics.
I'm not disagreeing, but they have been mentioning their URL quite a bit. I think there is too much on the screen as it is, but, it wouldn't be a bad thing, that, when they move to a sport they haven't covered yet, they flash on the screen something like "Want to know more about <fill in the sport> go to <insert URL> It's a different world than it was even 10 years ago. The younger generation is more inclined to look things up on the web without thinking of it as a cumbersome task. Even 50 something me does it quite often when I'm watching shows. And for the networks it's another revenue stream to get you to go their sites for information.
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Old 02-10-2014, 04:18 PM   #209
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A broadcast should never assume that the viewers know much about the sport or that they'll be motivated to go find additional information on their own. If the broadcaster is expecting the viewer to go get additional info, then the commentator should mention that and they should post a URL where people can learn more. But aside from that, the commentators should provide all the information that a neophyte viewer would need in order to watch and enjoy that event. And with the Olympics, that's especially true, since most of these events are things that the average viewer knows nothing about and likely has never seen, or if they have, it was four years ago at the previous Olympics.
There's a limit to that. Could you imagine if football announcers spent the beginning of every game talking about how there are 4 downs and you have to get 10 yards, etc.? Even in the Super Bowl they don't start with that.

You have to assume some level of knowledge on the part of the audience. But it varies widely depending on the sport and other context. In the Olympics it's a lot lower than most other places.
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Old 02-10-2014, 04:30 PM   #210
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Where can I find this feed of the naked pool? Asking for a friend. And myself.
You only really get that in the Summer Olympics when they are playing water polo...
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