Print 36 comment(s) - last by wordsworm.. on Nov 23 at 8:53 PM

Viacom has banned Google TV from accessing its episode's stations with nary an explanation.  (Source: Engadget)
Google isn't getting much love from the television industry

Google TV seems on a roll.  Powered by Android, the specialized software has already popped up in Sony's new Internet TV hardware and should be showing up in Samsung sets early next year as well.  

Standing in its way is a bizarre blockade from the television industry that appears to be taking its frustrations on internet video out against the new platform.  ABC, NBC, CBS, and most recently FOX have banned the platform from accessing their television websites.  And now Viacom, who recently lost a long and protracted court war with Google web-video subsidiary YouTube over piracy, has joined the merry band of banners.

Customers visiting the websites of MTV, Comedy Central, and Nickelodeon were rudely greeted with denials when trying to access TV episodes via their Android-powered internet TVs.

The decision to ban Google's TV platform seems baffling.  Customers could simply step a few feet to their computer and access the episodes.  And why did the networks put the episodes up in the first place if they didn't want them to be viewed?  The question hot on the minds of many -- why are networks pulling such a seemingly illogical and glaringly anti-customer move?  

At the end of the day it likely has some sort of vague basis in reality -- perhaps television providers are fearful of customers switching from viewing live TV to online episodes, which reportedly earn less ad revenue.  However, the boat seems to have already sailed on this front and the TV networks help cast it off, in fact, by putting legal episodes for their most popular shows up online.

Ultimately, the move will likely accomplish exactly what the networks least want -- driving more customers away to piracy and web video.

At the end of the day what seems particularly egregious is the fact that none of the networks will even talk about their decision to block the device.  Customers deserve an explanation, but networks seem determined not give them one.  Any worthwhile business man can tell you -- treating customers with disrespect is the greatest error any business can make.

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RE: Time for Google to...
By wordsworm on 11/23/2010 5:42:40 AM , Rating: 4
To be perfectly frank, I weary of reading all the trollish comments which come from these types of blogs from the writers, and the chorus that they sing for regarding media content conglomerates and organisations.

They think it's easy entertaining people, maintaining a business, etc. But it's really quite difficult. Even taking your run-of-the-mill B rated flick, ie something that Steven Segal is in, requires an awful lot of skill and investment to accomplish.

Once upon a time, I thought it would be easy to put together a kids book. But I can tell you, writing the words to go in the book was the easiest part. Everything else I've had to do has been a much greater challenge.

Armchair critics of the entertainment industry often decry how terrible a given film often is. However, if they think it so simple to come out with an original and highly entertaining flick, why don't they do it? The answer is simple: it's not easy, not by a long shot. It's not easy to make a book, record an album, or shoot a movie, despite the fact that there's an awful lot of technology out there to help that wasn't there even twenty years ago.

Even if Google wanted to get into the entertainment business, it would have the hell of an uphill battle. They have billions to throw at it, I'm sure, but money doesn't necessarily equal success.

Thus far, they have done some pretty nifty things: the search engine that could has chugged its way all the way to the top. It's got Google Earth, which is a marvellous accomplishment, Google Sketchup, and the online library project (though they clearly needed to have their lines established firmly by a multitude of governments). However, they have never made a movie, a TV show, or even a CD. Let them make content for once, and stop living within the shadow of content providers by simply providing an infinite number of links.

RE: Time for Google to...
By Boze on 11/23/2010 1:29:50 PM , Rating: 2
I have a completely different viewpoint on this subject.

Its very easy to produce a work of art. Kids can do this. Young adults are doing this with the tools we have available now. What's difficult, if you want to call it that, is to produce an original and thought-provoking work of art.

The Walking Dead on AMC comes to mind. The series is enjoying nearly universal acclaim from all critics and viewers. AMC doesn't have the financial capital to make a House, M.D. or Dancing With The Stars (I cannot understand how 17 million people watch this), but what they do have was a good story from good writers that came from excellent source material.

Are you going to tell me that AMC is using the world's best equipment, the most highly regarded names in the entertainment industry, and the absolute best locations to make this show? I highly doubt that. I'd be shocked if The Walking Dead costs more per episode than Stargate Universe ($2 million per episode).

Do you think Google could purchase equipment, build a studio, hire talent (directors, actors, etc.), and then spend $2 million an episode to make a good show? I'd wager they could...

RE: Time for Google to...
By wordsworm on 11/23/2010 8:53:46 PM , Rating: 2
You're telling me that kids came up with $2,000,000 per episode and put together "Walking Dead"? Even if the script came from a 10 year old, I'd be pretty impressed. Are they working the cameras? Because so far, the only kid I've seen in the show has a very small part.

"It's okay. The scenarios aren't that clear. But it's good looking. [Steve Jobs] does good design, and [the iPad] is absolutely a good example of that." -- Bill Gates on the Apple iPad
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