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News Analysis
Why NBC Deked HD Viewers On the Hockey Game
TVPredictions.com

Washington, D.C. (February 22, 2010) -- One of the most anticipated Olympic hockey matches in years was played last night and NBC decided not to show it.

The U.S.-Canada game, which was won by the U.S., instead aired on MSNBC, which unfortunately is not available in high-def on DIRECTV, in some Comcast areas and many other cable markets.

So, why did NBC opt to cover such sports as pairs figure skating instead of the big hockey match up?

Simple.

Being a broadcast network, which means it's free over the air, NBC gets a more diverse audience than a cable network. In layman's terms, that means that more females -- plenty more females -- watch NBC compared to MSNBC, USA, Bravo or other cable networks owned by NBC that are covering the Olympic Games.

And females like pairs figure skating -- and all kinds of other figure skating.

But in general, they don't like hockey.

Read more below.

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So, to ensure the largest audience possible for NBC, the network decided to throw hockey under the bus, so to speak.

Final note: DIRECTV, which hasn't added a high-def channel in months, looks particularly foolish this morning for not having MSNBC available in high-def. At least the other TV providers that don't offer the news network in HD have added some high-def channels in recent weeks.

But DIRECTV continues to sit on its hands and claim that people don't really need more HDTV channels.

That's not true, of course, and I think the massive protests that came DIRECTV's way last night is ample evidence of that.


Also see:
Consumer Reports: 'Best Buys' For HDTVs

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Phillip Swann is president and publisher of TVPredictions.com. He has been quoted in dozens of publications and broadcast outlets, including CNN, Fox News, Inside Edition, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, The Financial Times, The Associated Press and The Hollywood Reporter. He can be reached at swann@tvpredictions.com or at 703-505-3064.

Click TVPredictions.com to read more news and features on TV technology. 

 
 
 
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