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Working Around NBCOlympics.com's Stupid Restrictions

I've always loved the Olympics, but have hated NBC's coverage. This year, they promise to have more coverage, including a ton of online coverage. I'd prefer to watch the BBC's coverage, as I've always have heard it's better, but NBC's exclusive rights to American broadcasts forces the other providers to lock us out.

Wired Wiki has a great bit on how to watch the Olympics online. One thing I've found out about NBCs online video system is that access to some videos (encore and live videos, for example) is restricted if your cable provider doesn't participate. According to the NBC site, BendBroadband doesn't participate, as I was trying to watch an encore video of the Prefontaine Classic and couldn't.

The workaround I found? Select another zip code and known big-name provider for that are. I personally selected 97403 (a Eugene zip code) and Comcast and was able to get in fine. So just get a zip code for one of Comcast's markets and use it, since Comcast appears to be participating

(Or maybe it's a local NBC-affiliate issue, I have no idea, but the local KTVZ Olympics page itself seems to work fine.)

I tried selecting DirecTV and 97701 (a Bend zip code) and the site told me that DirecTV doesn't serve this area (which it actually does), so I envision a bunch of people getting angry at the NBC site when Olympic coverage starts in earnest tomorrow.

Update on 8/14/08: First off, welcome Bulletin readers. If you're trying to get good high quality clips online, Waxy has a great write-up on Pirating The Olympics


Posted by Jake on 08/07/08 @ 11:30 AM
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