NBC after attacking everyone for watching clips of their shows on the internet, posts the videos on their own site. Reponses from bloggers aren’t mixed.

NBC offers “web favorites,” an official collection of viral videos (kind of tiny as presented on their site). They say:

“Now, instead of searching the web for “borrowed” NBC highlights, you can go to the source! We’ve taken your viral favorites and gathered them into one convenient location. Watch. React. Tell a friend.”

But wait… isn’t the whole point about viral videos that those were the ones that were shared a lot all over the web? So apparently, NBC is “borrowing” from the wisdom of web crowds here while they hypocritically condemn them at the same time. (more..)

  1. Milo says:

    NBC has been offering this for some time. The difference now is the videos work!

  2. Lou says:

    I’m a little torn on this one. In one sense, the videos are their property and they can control their “usage” how they want.

    In the other sense, I can admit they show a certain amount of hypocrisy, where they are benefiting from original “illegal” behavior (other people sharing the video on the web).

    Now if they follow this up with clips of all their shows on this new site, available from initial airdate, then, they deserve to benefit on their site. However, if they wait for the clips to become “famous” and only then do a cease-and-desist thing, well, there is a “smell” to to.

  3. jasontheodd says:

    Gotta agree with Milo, all that happened was a tweak to the video. Must be slow news day if a product renaming has us all posting….

  4. It’s not so much hypocracy. It’s not that they are just saying “We don’t want you to host the videos. We want US to host the videos.” People just need to think like a content publisher. It comes down to revenue. Sure, viral videos/marketing can lead people back to the source, but companies still see direct ad revenue as more reliable (probably because it is; I still have no desire to go back to watching SNL and I doubt many others do just because a couple funny vids were posted).

    Plus, youtube didn’t just host the videos and pony up the cash for the bandwidth. They have their own ads where NBC doesn’t see a penny.

  5. Alex says:

    Hey, at least they are seeing the light. Why don’t they sell these things on iTunes? I bet some people would buy them.

  6. I think they’re just coming to the realization that a big chunk of the success enjoyed by the two SNL videos is due to them being available and shared online, and I agree with Richard that NBC (as the copyright owner) deserves to earn the ad revenue for them.

    It may have taken a major viral “event” to jolt them to their senses after nearly a decade of obliviousness (got to be a better noun…), but I’m glad that at least one of the Networks is slowly wising up to the importance of the ‘net in promoting content.

  7. Mike Cannali says:

    This is not a technical issue; it is a legal one.

    The videos are NBC’s copyrighted intellectual property. If they do not agressively defend that copyright, they will potentially lose it. Assume for example a SNL skit is used by a competitor. The competitor might assert that since NBC did not attempt to protect it’s IP, then it was effectively in the public domain. Indeed, affiliates, who have paid for the right to air the material, could legitimately request compensation.

    That SNL gets introduced to a wider audience by having their video’s circulate the net is likely not lost on NBC’s executives. What NBC has done is make the videos available for widespread viewing by web linkage, rather than by copying, such that their IP remains protectable. The web linkage carries with it a copyright notice and likely some revenue producing message. The web link itself can be copied without limitation and NBC still retains control of their property and right to charge for it’s distribution.

    It is the difference of referring a friend to the library for a good book just read, as opposed to running off a copy of the book on a Xerox for them instead.

  8. epeters208 says:

    This is the smartest thing that any network has EVER done


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