Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Suck it, NBC!

As you know, I'm an avid Olympics fan and attempt to watch as many hours as possible during the two week event.   However, this year there was problem.  It is incredibly difficult to watch copious amounts of Olympic coverage without a television.  I am not exaggerating when I say this situation caused me a great deal of anxiety.  My only solution it seemed, was watching the Olympics in random neighborhood bars.  Not terrible, but not quite as ideal as being able to watch them in the comfort of my own home (where I can weep in private). 

So you can imagine my excitement when NBC announced that they would be streaming every event LIVE on their website for FREE! Yes, my problems were solved.  NBC rocks.  I get to watch the Olympics.  All hail NBC!

But then, a day before the Opening Ceremony, NBC decided to pop my monstrous bubble of Olympic excitement.  Live streaming was free on their website...if you have a cable subscription.  WHAAT?!? This made absolutely zero sense to me.  Which is exactly what I told my cable provider.  Why would you watch the Olympics online if you have a television? According to the cable provider, it's mainly so cable customers can watch the Olympics on their mobile devices.  Like their lives weren't glorious enough with their fancy cable package. God forbid they miss a second of the coverage while they're buying groceries or using the bathroom. Boo NBC.  I hate you.  You're the worst. 

Why does NBC care if you have a cable connection? Because NBC is owned by Comcast! A cable provider! I.Was.Angry.  Like, "down with the Man... I'm going off the grid to live in the woods... Ron Swanson" kind of angry.  However, instead of emptying my bank account and heading to forest, I did the next best thing.  I wrote NBC a sternly worded email.  I'm sure that NBC execs were crying tears of regret when I told them they'd "squashed my Olympic spirit" by denying me, and 1000s of other Americans, our "right to watch the Olympics free of charge".  Really, I'm like a modern-day Norma Ray.  I'm sure she would have handled this exactly the same way.

Well, NBC didn't seem too fazed by my email.  They reminded me that I could use a temporary 4 hour pass (to watch 14 days of events) or access the live streamed footage 48 HOURS after the event aired.  Awesome.  Thanks for your generosity.

In my desperation, I tried to watch BBC and CTV coverage as well, but was restricted due to my United Stated IP address.  I had to face the facts.  The 2012 Olympics and I were just not meant to be...or were we?  (duh duh duh)

Enter TunnelBear.  TunnelBear is an VPN app (sorry, I don't know what all of these acronyms mean...I'm not Steve Jobs) that creates an encrypted internet connection between my computer and the server I'm trying to connect with the UK.  Basically, TunnelBear makes it look like my computer signal is British instead of American, thus allowing me to watch the BBC Olympic coverage.  It's a freaking miracle is what it is! I've already watched the women's team gymnastics finals and today's swimming.  And I watched it live! Who's the boss now, NBC?


  1. Oh, Georgie. This post made me giggle. A lot. Miss you!

  2. Steve Jobs would be so proud of your tech skills...just a guess on VPN - Very Pissed NBC!!

  3. if you uninstall and reinstall your browser, you can sign up for as many free 4 hour passes as you want. At least this is what I discovered using Google Chrome!

  4. Oh Georgie - how I miss you!

  5. I know I am a little late reading this post...but man this made me laugh outloud! On a Friday afternoon (the first week of school) this was JUST what I needed!