Why the Olympics Are Still Tape Delayed

Friday, August 03, 2012


(Joe Shlabotnik/flickr)

Many TV watchers were upset this week with NBC's insistence on showing much of their Olympic coverage on a tape delay. The network didn't help matters by spoiling events they hadn't yet screened. Time Magazine TV Critic James Ponowozik explains why NBC refuses to offer the most anticipated events live.


James Poniewozik

Hosted by:

Bob Garfield

Comments [6]


I’ve recently started a site, the info you offer on this website has helped me greatly.

Thanks for all of your time & work.

Mar. 07 2013 12:36 AM
Garry Leonard from Connecticut

Why in the world do we needn't endure so many hours of beach volleyball. It should not even be an Olympic sport but sice it is why not put it in one of the secondary channels for aal the aging beach boys to ogle those bikini i clad butts.

Boring borinboring night after night to turn on and see them cavorting in a constructed beach in the middle of London bottom say downright ally. Next we we will be forced to watch mud wrestling as an Olympic sport.

Aug. 06 2012 09:40 PM

For Pete's sake!

You want coverage for free???!!!!

I do!!!

Just LOOK at how ridiculously expensive it must be for NBC to provide for the logistics of the coverage they're offering!

Let the damn company make some money off of advertisers!!!!

NBC provides the Olympics and much, much more quality content for FREE to those who don't want to pay for cable, which IS TRULY a rip-off!!

I've got no problem whatever with NBC trying to make as much as they can from advertisers during events like the Olympics... I'm always hoping they make enough to keep providing great content for free!!


A viewer who knows a good thing when they see it!

Aug. 05 2012 11:40 AM
Evan from Santa Monica, CA

It's interesting that NBC has shown the Olympics soccer, tennis, and basketball events live. Soccer and tennis fans in the US are used to having the games/matches they are interested in seeing not fitting their prime time TV viewing (trust me as a devoted soccer fan who has gotten up at 4:30am here on the West Coast to watch a big game in England). Basketball fans aren't used to watching games on a weekday morning or afternoon, but we also would refuse to watch a game on tape delay. I think that NBC's production team knows this--these are the sports that have a built-in fan base already. NBC treats the other events not as their own individual sports, but rather part of the Olympic experience, ready to be pre-packaged and made American-friendly for our enjoyment, and their paternalistic attitude that they know what their audience wants has no room for self-doubt.

Aug. 05 2012 11:23 AM
Robert from NYC

The NBC Olympics coverage is pure crap, pure corporate crap. And who the hell cares about beach volleyball that it is the most covered event. The problem is that one and only one broadcaster is licensed to present the Olympics. It should be open to all broadcasters and we'd probably get everything all day on different channels. It stinks. It's turned me off to the Olympics along with the International Olympics Committee. This is nothing but a one percenter event. It's there for the one percenters to enjoy and from which to make tons of money.

Aug. 05 2012 10:13 AM
Jeff Pappas from Dumbo

Shame on NBC for not showing swimming ( and many others ) finals LIVE especially on a weekend ! BTW even during the week you can show it LIVE and at prime time for the fortunate that have day jobs (also they have the $ to have a DVR ) !

20,000,000 Americans are out of work, and a large part of us want to see this event that we wait 4 years for. You can still tape it and RE SHOW it. In todays media cycle I just can't avoid but here who the winners are.

Oh You just told me who won, and its not on tape till later this evening. Thats just downright irresponsible and greedy, choke on your profits I will never watch your network!

Aug. 05 2012 10:08 AM

Leave a Comment

Email addresses are required but never displayed.