NBC demands YouTube pull 500 pieces of video content

“Last week, TV network NBC, which is owned by General Electric and Vivendi Universal, halted the online distribution of a popular Saturday Night Live video clip.,”Alyce Lomax reports for The Motely Fool. “Back in December, NBC’s SNL aired a hilarious skit called ‘Lazy Sunday’ that featured two ‘rappers’ filling their Sunday with the acquisition of cupcakes, candy, and a matinee of The Chronicles of Narnia. By the next day, the clip was making the rounds online and had become an unquestionably viral success, mostly because of a site called YouTube, which allows video to be shared, for free, among video junkies on the Net.”

“Meanwhile, NBC is allowing Apple to distribute the clip for $1.99 per download, and in an interesting aside, it has not blocked Google from distributing it for free through its video store, which is currently in beta. (However, one can only imagine that Google won’t be immune for long if the networks continue to make moves like this.) Not surprisingly, NBC has the clip available for free on its own Web site, and anyone who uses Microsoft Windows can see it there,” Lomax reports. “Meanwhile, CNET reported that NBC asked YouTube to remove about 500 other pieces of content.”

“There are certainly logical reasons why NBC would want to nip such movements in the bud, despite the converse argument that content sharing and the viral phenomenon add up to good marketing exposure the company doesn’t even have to pay for,” Lomax writes. “But given YouTube’s gaining popularity among the young people that NBC surely covets, I’d have to say that for now, this seems like a rather shortsighted move, much like the music recording industry’s often heavy-handed tactics that arguably irritate the same customers the entertainment companies want to attract.”

Full article here.

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  1. I’m still pissed at NBC.com because their online videos are Windows-only. They recently offered the final three unaired episodes of The Book of Daniel for viewing on NBC.com, but their service required both Windows and IE 5.5 only. Pathetic!

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