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ABC, NBC, CBS Block Google TV, Declare War

Discussion in 'Google TV General Discussion' started by JimMariner, Oct 22, 2010.

  1. JimMariner

    JimMariner Member

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    [​IMG]If you were hoping to use your new Google TV device to stream full episodes of shows such as NBC's The Office, CBS' $h*! My Dad Says and ABC's Modern Family you may be out of luck. The three major U.S. television networks--ABC, CBS and NBC--are reportedly blocking full episode video streaming from their Websites to Google TV devices. The three networks now join Hulu as holdouts for providing content to Google's new set-top box. News Corp's Fox and Viacom are not currently blocking access to Google TV, although Fox says it may still do so, according to The Wall Street Journal .

    What Google TV Is All About

    Google, Sony and Logitech started rolling out Google TV devices earlier this month including one set-top box from Logitech, and one Blu-ray player and four HDTVs from Sony. The Android-based platform is the latest attempt to merge your living room television with the Web.

    Google TV was designed to allow users to easily search for their favorite television shows across local television listings and Web sites offering streaming. Google TV can also run Android apps such as Netflix streaming, Pandora Internet radio and Amazon Video on Demand.

    [​IMG] Ironically, NBC -- one of the networks blocking Google TV -- offers a CNBC Google TV application for fans of its news channel. Google TV also comes pre-loaded with Google's Chrome Web browser to surf the Web just as you would from your computer. Dish network subscribers can also use Google TV as a DVR.

    Although all three networks confirmed to the Journal they are blocking access to Google TV, it's not clear if the ban is working that well. Search Engine Land's Danny Sullivan reports that he was able to stream a full episode of The Office from NBC.com, and a partial episode of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation at CBS.com before being blocked. The Google TV restrictions at ABC.com and Hulu were in full force, according to Sullivan. Hulu, it should be noted, is working with Google to bring the site's Hulu Plus service to Google TV.

    It's not clear why the networks are blocking Google TV, but it's not surprising that the networks would block Google TV. If successful, the technology could threaten the current business model for broadcast TV including lucrative distribution and advertising deals. Reuters reports that Google is in talks with the networks to lift the Google TV block.

    Pointless Ban

    Blocking access to online video may seem like a prudent strategic move in the short term, but the fact is the networks will not thwart Google TV owners who know where to look. Since Google TV comes loaded with the Chrome browser, Google TV owners could just navigate to the many sites that catalog pirate streams of network television.

    Everyday thousands of people upload recorded broadcast streams to one of the online video services such as Megavideo, ZShare and WiseVid. Other sites then catalog those videos allowing users to find content quickly and easily.

    [​IMG]Google TV may be able to block those sites from its search results, but that won't stop someone who knows where to point their browser from finding all the online video content they will ever need.

    Users are moving towards online video streaming in ever larger numbers and spending more time than ever viewing online video. In September, 175 million U.S. Internet users watched an average of 14.4 hours of online video per user, according to metrics firm comScore. The year previous, comScore found that 168 million users in the U.S. watched an average of 9.8 hours of online video during the month of September.


    By Ian Paul, PCWorld
    Oct 22, 2010 8:38 am
     
  2. andcbii

    andcbii New Member

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    i guess this is the price you pay for being an early adopter... My google TV may get returned because of this.
     
  3. Karen

    Karen New Member

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    I think ABC, NBC and CBS may regret their backward-looking attitude some day very soon. In fact, I think all companies who try to maintain the status quo will soon be out of business. Only forward-looking companies will survive the future....

    My two cents.
     
  4. Esckey

    Esckey New Member

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    I have Boxee installed on my Apple TV. When Hulu began blocking it I honestly stopped watching their programming. Who has time to watch all these shows on cable or broadcast? If they make it difficult for me to watch something I will find another way or I will find better content. And there is plenty of better content.
     
  5. timeleft

    timeleft New Member

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    So it's ok per ABC, CBS, NBC and Hulu if I connect my laptop via HDMI cable to my Sony tv and watch, but if I go directly from my googletv that's not ok? Same stupid logic with Hulu on my android phone! Guess what, doesn't work. Won't work on googletv either. Same mentality is leaving a lot of victims on the side of the road. The innovators and those willing to develop new business models will be the bigs winners, not those fanatically clutching onto ever diminishing crumbs they have left.
     
  6. Karen

    Karen New Member

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    Hulu is owned by NBC, Fox, and ABC. Just sayin'.
     
  7. alphawave7

    alphawave7 Moderator Staff Member

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    This harkens back to the recent Lifehacker article:
    Ditching Cable for the Web: How Much Can You Save Buying, Renting, or Streaming TV
    Basically, if those shows listed mean anything to you (they don't for me), you'll still be able to access them later via HULU, or better still AMZ or Netflix (wife and I worked our way through Weeds on Netflix recently), so unless you work in an office where it's imperative to be 'in the know' on commercial programming, I wouldn't sweat the network's intransigence in adapting to new business models. It's bound to happen anyway. :)
     
  8. les anderson

    les anderson New Member

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    This is frusterating for us today but once these boxes have been out for a while and the hackers get at them than I am confident that we will be able to circumvent anything that these guys do to block us.

    Android is a well known open source OS that has been hacked in every way imaginable. The wireless carriers try and do stupid stuff like this as well and ALL OF It goes out the window once the device has been rooted.

    The networks are the ones that are fighting an uphill battle on this. They will lose.
     
  9. toplay

    toplay New Member

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    Has anyone been able to get things to work by changing the user agent?

    How are they blocking exactly?

    FYI: Revue Chrome user agent
     
  10. andcbii

    andcbii New Member

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    I believe they use flash to identify the OS
     
  11. JimMariner

    JimMariner Member

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    Now all we need to do is fool flash into saying our boxes aren't GTV :p

    I tried the "useragent" mod, and while it does change how "whatsmyuseragent.com" see's my Revue, not sure how well it will work. I was able to watch clips on CBS, ABC caught it right away as a Non Approved OS. I tried watching a CBS show, it was good till the first commercial break, then sound only, no picture.
     
  12. nagmier

    nagmier New Member

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    They don't check the user agent anymore they check the flash player as thats a little harder to spoof
     

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